Turning your lawn to drought-tolerant landscaping

SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – California Governor Jerry Brown has said the state is in a new era because of the drought.

On Wednesday, the governor issued an executive order to require new water restrictions in communities across the state.

As part of his call to action, the governor would like see more lawns replaced with drought tolerant landscaping.

The governor outlined a list of ways that California residents can help conserve much needed water.

One of those ways is losing the lawn. The governor asked local government to help eliminate 50 million-square feet of water gulping lawns.

Just how big is that?

It’s an area twice the size of Disneyland.

In San Diego some places are already making the change from lawns to sustainable landscapes, a few thousand-feet at a time.

To save on water, Governor Jerry Brown would like to see less grass in yards, and more plants that are drought tolerant.

Taking out turf and substituting more drought tolerant landscaping does not mean a yard has to look like a desert with rocks and cactus.

The most significant way that homeowners can cut back on water use is by replacing the turf in their yard.

On average, about 50 to 60 percent of the water used in a home is spent outdoors on landscaping.

The owner of a La Jolla property decided to take out the grass in her yard last year, and hired a company that specializes in designing and building low water use landscapes.

Going from grass to drought tolerant garden cut her water use by half.

Also, because of the drought, more homeowners are turning to drip irrigation systems. Embedded in the ground, the drip system is a more efficient way to deliver water.

California’s drought means many residents will be doing things differently, but it could also give people a different appreciation for what is beautiful.

There is an incentive to ripping out a grass lawn. A regional rebate program that will give property owners two dollars per square foot, if grass is replaced with a low water use landscape or artificial turf.

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