Utah Stories

Xeriscaping Vs. Lawns

Rethinking your landscape.


Daisen-in2Americans have been obsessing about lawns since the early 20th Century. Over the years, lawns have become a symbol of prosperity, prestige and tradition, but today we have an opportunity to change the convention that supports lawns in front of every house and start new traditions that celebrate different types of landscaping.

According to Utah Division of Water Resources Conservation, a typical Utah household uses about 67 percent of their total water outdoors. This means that 2/3 of our water utilization is being used on thirsty landscapes. That’s a lot of water wasted, especially considering that Utah is a desert and the second driest state in the nation!  

You can update your landscaping to become more environmentally friendly by using drought tolerant, water wise and native plants. In addition, Xeriscaping is a style of landscaping that uses little to no irrigation.

“Many people have a misunderstanding of what Xeriscape actually is, which is understandable because there are so few examples of Xeriscape done right!” explains Marita Tewes, Horticulture Director for Red Butte Gardens, “Xeriscape is not gravel and cactus, it is not only xeric plants. A well-designed Xeriscape has room for a practical turf area and room for plants that require more water, but all plants are designed, planted and irrigated by their hydrozone, or watering requirements.”

Xeriscaping principles suggest starting off with a good design plan and incorporating low-water-use plants. There are several great garden stores throughout Utah that can help you find low-water-use plants and provide useful suggestions.

Cactus & Tropicals

801-485 2542

2735 South 2000 East

Salt Lake City, UT  84109

Millcreek Gardens


3500 South 900 East

Salt Lake City, Utah 84106

Western Garden Center

801-364 -7871

550 South 600 East

Salt Lake City Utah 84102

Deseret Nursery Perennial Farm


West California Avenue

Salt Lake City, Utah 84104

Join our newsletter.
Stay informed.

Related Articles