Designing your own waterwise or California native planting or garden can be as simple or as nuanced as you want to make it. There is no “one way” to “do it right.” It’s all about what works best for you. Gardening can be an outlet to express creativity, but you absolutely do not need to be an “artistic type.” We are here to help you create your own vision and make it happen.
By following a basic set of principles and using our tips, you can easily design your new landscape successfully. If you want to dig deeper into much more involved content, check out our additional YouTube video links below. However, if you’d rather keep it simple, know that all of those extra details are optional.
A note about the words “garden” and “landscape”: Both terms can be used in many ways, and there is no single correct definition. For residential properties, we tend to use both words interchangeably to refer to any outside space that has a plant component. We tend to use the word “garden” more often because we like its connotation of an intentionally designed space set up to meet your vision.
For more information and inspiration about each of these aspects, be sure to check out our “DIY Waterwise and California Native Garden Design” YouTube playlist.
Top tips for designing a visually pleasing and maintainable garden that will be a pleasure to be in:
Whether you’re doing your own garden care, or you hire a landscaper to do it, be sure to record what you planted, save pictures of what those plants look like, diagram where you planted each, and create a maintenance document listing for which plants should be tended to in which season. The landscape industry is just beginning to catch up with how to care for this “newer” waterwise plant palette, so most landscapers or gardeners will need to be communicated with regarding what should be done to care for which plants and when. Without this communication, despite the best of intentions, plants may end up cut back at random times and by random amounts, resulting in less attractive and less healthy plants, and potentially far fewer blooms.
Set yourself or your landscaper up for success by using the information on our Waterwise Garden Planner website to create a seasonal care plan for your own planting.
We also teach free garden design–related workshops at the Waterwise Community Center throughout the year. Check out our upcoming schedule and join us.