Waterwise Landscaping in the
San Juan Basin
Four Corners region is a diverse landscape covering
parts of Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona and Utah. With
elevations ranging from 4,000 ft. to over 14,000 ft.
the landscape character can change from alpine to desert
within a few miles. The Four Corners climate is generally
semi-arid. Precipitation averages may range from as
little as 8 inches per year in the lower elevations
to 15 inches or more in the local mountain ranges. Periods
of limited rainfall and drought are beginning to pose
a challenge for the expanding population of the region.
The potential for catastrophic wildfires and insect
epidemics compounds the problem.
Difference Xeriscaping Makes
The average family of five uses approximately
217,234 gallons of potable water per year. Roughly 50%
of this water is used outdoors to maintain lawns. As
the regional population continues to grow, competition
for limited water resources has elevated the need for
Xeriscaping is a holistic approach to landscaping for
the purpose of achieving water conservation and enhancing
the relationship between humans and their built environment.
Xeriscaping is a process that is founded upon seven
fundamental horticultural principles. Often, xeriscaping
is stereotyped as growing nothing more than cactus in
a sea of gravel. In contrast, good xeric design practices
result in a rich tapestry of colors, textures and plant
materials that are adaptable to any style of landscaping.
Good xeriscape design includes practical landscape considerations
that affect the home, as well as the outdoor human–