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  • Writer's pictureJanae Moss

Desert Landscaping

Another type of landscaping that most people would never think of is desert landscaping. Desert landscaping is not like the landscaping that most people are used to seeing. These type of landscaping exist only in dry climate area. Desert landscaping will require the proper planning in order for the plants and other things that are part of the landscape to survive.

When it comes to plants, you are limited to a lot of the plants available. There are not many plants out there that would survive in desert climate. If you are planning to install an irrigation system to help non-native plants survive, this isn't a very practical thing to do. Even though the plants are receiving sufficient amount of water, it will not be able to stand up to the heat of the sun. For this reason, it is much simpler to use plants that can handle the harsh weather.

Another reason to use desert plants is their ability to thrive in soil that is not very rich in nutrient. Many hot climate area have poor quality soil and only certain plants can survive in them. Some of these plants include Bougainvillea, Oleander, Sage / Purple Sage, Lantana, Pampas Grass, Fairy Duster, and Red Bird of Paradise. These plants are hardy plants which means they require less maintenance. Some can thrive without water for weeks at a time.

There are some who don't live in the hot climate region, but love the look of the desert. Having a desert landscape somewhere else beside in hot climate region is possible. Desert plants will survive in the warmer season, but during the colder season, it might not do so well, especially in areas where it snow a lot. Your only option would to bring the plants inside and put them in a container. Once spring arrive, you can move the plants back out. Even though it seems like a lot of hassle, but it's all worth it if you want a desert landscape.

Desert landscaping is not as popular as other landscaping due to limited use of plants and other landscaping amenities. However, with the right design and planning, a desert landscape can be beautiful like any other landscape. If you want to try something new, look into desert landscaping and you might like what you see.

When you talk of desert and landscaping in the desert areas, there is one common reason for doing such thing and that is conservation. Water is the most valuable resource in a desert location. As such many individuals in the past have missed out on the essence of landscaping for fear of wasting this very valuable resource. The good thing is that you can actually have nice landscaping and even plenty of attractive colors while maximizing your use of water and even conserving this precious commodity. It may sound amazing and to others is a little too good to be true but with the right planning; this is very possible despite the lack of knowledge about gardening and landscaping.

The initial and perhaps most practical method of landscaping in desert areas are to pick plants that are native to the place in which you are landscaping. This is of course is the first no nonsense step to a good lush environment even in harmful weathers. These ornaments actually have two major advantages. The first one is they are accustomed not only to the dryness of the weather but also the abundant amount of sunlight that they will be getting everyday in a year. Plants from other climates are more used to periods of sun and clouds and in most cases minimal sun exposure within the day.

Secondly, they do not have costly maintenance such as expensive fertilizers and nutrients, to be able to obtain their beauty. They can just grow in desert soil that is not famous for being nutrient rich. Combine these two benefits with the fact that these plants know how to live with small amounts of water and they are excellent landscaping choices for desert areas.

Before making the final decision on your desert garden landscaping, you need to conduct a thorough research. It is actually possible to have a lush green or even bright and colorful garden and landscaping. You must seek the services of local experts to have the best shaping of your landscaping job and even ideas to combine colors and greenery you like the most into your garden while giving the efficient use of the water, which is really limited in supply. Make use of irrigation widely and wisely to be able to conserve the water. In fact, small ponds are ideal and water efficient in this particular season.

The major challenge when in desert landscaping is efficiency. The ideal way to address this is by grouping plants that require similar amounts of water together. You must also cleverly use of either real or engineered slopes in order to give a runoff area for rain and those plants that require the most concentration of water. You also need to pick trees, bushes, shrubs, plants and flowers that are hardy and resilient and if not native to the place at the very least native to similar seasons. Always bear in mind that desert landscaping is rough on plants and individuals. But despite of that, you need to learn how to come up with a nice oasis of your very own.

DIY Desert Landscaping - What Are the Things to Consider?

If you live near the desert or in an area where the climate gets too hot, you may begin to think of this as deterrent to having a beautiful landscape. However, that couldn't be any more far from the truth. With an excellent DIY desert landscaping idea, you can surely improve the look of your yard at less the price.

Landscaping your yard is something you can do yourself if you just have the time to spare. Also, it is a very fulfilling project to undertake if your hobby includes gardening and DIY stuff. With a desert landscape, it wouldn't even take too much of your time once you're done with it to maintain.

Space and Budget

One of the first things you need to do is to take inventory of the space you are going to landscape as well as the resources you have available. Both will help you draft an excellent design for your landscape. If you have it, I'd even suggest you use the parcel map of your property as the basis for the design. You can easily mark the areas when you're drawing up the design for the landscape. Another thing you need to look into is the budget you're willing to spend for this project. If you have a clear idea of the amount, you will be forced to scour your area for the best priced supplier. This way, you don't have to spend more than you have to.


Next, you will need to choose the right plants to feature in your desert landscape. Because you are in an area where not all variety of plants can thrive, you have to be more careful in your selection. In fact, I would suggest that you go for plants that are native in your area. This way, you can be sure that the plants can thrive well with the type of soil and climate you have. This makes it easier for you to care and maintain the plants.

When landscaping for a desert or hot area, it's best if you choose plants which can retain water for long period of time and can thrive well even when exposed to the sun for most hours of the day throughout the year. Good choices would include plants like Pampas Grass, Red Bird of Paradise, Bougainvillea, Palms and the different variety of Cactus.


Aside from aesthetic value, efficiency has to be kept in mind when planning the design of the landscape. For a desert landscape, irrigation has to be more efficient with the design's main consideration is conservation. And it has to be arranged in such a way that would look good aesthetically.

For example, you may arrange plants in groups according to their water requirements. This way, you will have an easier time watering the plants. Or if you have a hilly yard, you may layer the plants in your yard and efficiently use the slopes as a runoff for rain to get to the plants which needs the most water.

The Best Options For Desert Landscaping

You cannot just pick any plants because died plants cannot do much for your property. Spend a while to think carefully about your landscaping plan and confirm that everything is suitable for the climate of your area. Using a better irrigation might keep your plants alive but its time consuming and also cost you a lot. It will be much better if you just stick to an easier plan which includes only plants with high survivability under the hot climate.

The best thing about desert landscaping friendly plants is that the plants will survive under the hot tempered sun and adapt to the bad characteristic soils. Do not look down to those abilities because the areas under the hot sun usually have bad soil too. You do one thing, but you get two results.

Here are the list of beautiful plants that you can employ in your desert landscaping:

Longwood Blue bluebeard

This is a shrub, it is deciduous and it will grow back each and every spring. Its capability to restore health and happiness makes it very great for desert landscaping. It is a big shrub; it can grow up to three and four feet high and two feet wide. You will love this shrub in your desert landscaping because it has beautiful blue flower clusters and silver foliage. Furthermore, it also spread a very nice fragrance.

Autumn Joy

Autumn Joy is a lovely evergreen that perfect your desert landscaping with its great amount of leaves which twist beautifully. It has many leaves colors which can fit with any plant in your garden. It is also suitable for any desert landscaping plan. If there is a plant that should always be used in any desert garden, this is that plant. It grows easily anywhere, even on the rocky gardens. It also has beautiful flowers that you have never seen anywhere before. The flowers have different colors and shades, mostly are red, pink, yellow, and orange. One thing for sure; this plant attract butterflies which give even more peaceful nuance to your garden.

Penchant for green lawns and prolific leafy plants that require a great deal of water has long been known across the country. Realistically though, in this time of drought, of economic downturns, and of green-living, it's more common sense and certainly less costly to begin to step away from some of the most expensive and water requiring plants that we're using.

That kind of outlook is especially true of those who live in desert areas. With the move to the more arid country comes some changes in your landscaping that will make your life a lot easier. Not only will your plants be more hardy, more liable to survive the cool desert nights in the winter and the harsh dry heat in the summer, but they will require less effort on your part to maintain your landscaping and keep it looking sharp for less money.

Setting up a landscaping plan that has been custom tailored to withstand the rigors that the desert can throw at it may require the use of a specialist who is accustomed to the area and knows the native plants, as well as others which are well suited to your climate. Having a landscaping expert design your layout may cost a few dollars more. Realistically, it may cost you a lot less in the long range.

In fact, not just desert landscaping can benefit from the use of some more native plants and landscaping that is geared to withstand drought-type conditions, but virtually anywhere in the Utah could actually benefit from this type of landscaping venture.

Desert landscaping does not leave you stuck with endless cacti protruding from your lawn. It means that your greenery has to be chosen for its hardiness, not that you can't have any.

Some things you will want to studiously avoid in the desert include turf grasses. This is because of the vast effort they take to look nice, as well as the amount of water that you will need to keep them green and pretty. Not all grass is eliminated however and surprisingly there are a great many that you can use effectively in this area. Deer grass in tufts is a great choice for adding some green and tan to your landscape, depending on the time of the year.

A few shrubs and smaller plants that are hardy, wear well in the vast heat of the desert and still produce flowers nearly all year long are things. Trees that will offer you shady areas as well as great looks and are drought hardy are the Mesquite, as well as the African Sumac, which grows to an excellent height and can actually save you money by shading your home.

Before you plant, if you're not familiar with your new area, consult with a landscaping expert Truco services to help you to get the most from your desert landscaping and save yourself some money and effort. In any area, desert landscaping or extreme northwest landscaping-planting native is always your best practice.

Truco Services, Inc.

4640 Commerce Drive

Murray, Utah 84107

(801) 466-8044

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