Waterwise Garden and Landscaping Books

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Is it possible to enjoy attractive landscaping with a limited supply of water? Yes! The selections below are full of ideas that can help you create an attractive, water-efficient landscape for your home that compliments its appearance throughout the year.

For more ideas, see A California-Friendly Guide to Native and Drought Tolerant Gardens.

Answers for California Gardeners book cover

Answers for California Gardeners
Robert Smaus 
Los Angeles Times, 2002, 240pp.

Compilation of author's Times articles and garden Q&A columns. Updated with latest information, easily understood by readers.

California Gardener's Guide

California Gardener's Guide 
Bruce and Sharon Asakawa 
Cool Springs Press, 2000, 432pp.

Features 165 premium plants for the Golden State. Each plant entry includes a color photograph. Book covers annuals, perennials, berries, trees, houseplants, groundcovers, roses, and more. Advise on planting, fertilizing, care and pest control included.

Gardening with Less Water book cover

Gardening with Less Water
David Bainbridge
Storey Publishing, 2015, 128pp.

This book offers simple, inexpensive, low-tech techniques for watering your garden much more efficiently — using up to 90 percent less water for the same results. 

Native Landscaping: from El Paso to L.A.

Native Landscaping from El Paso to L.A. 
Sally & Andy Wasowski 
McGraw-Hill Publ., 2000, 208pp.

Landscapes of the Southwest have special requirements that include rain, sun and often rugged conditions. Users of this book will be able to explore the ways to create a lively, beautiful, drought-tolerant, environmentally friendly, low-maintenance and affordable home landscape.

Sprinklers and Drip Systems

Ortho's Sprinklers & Drip Systems 
Meredith Books, 1998, 96pp.

Starting from the basics, readers learn about irrigation systems, their needs and which one will work best for them. Installation and maintenance information are also included. Sections on troubleshooting, problem solving, customizing designs, and well-diagrammed how-to instructions create a helpful guide for any home gardener.

The Dry Garden

The Dry Garden: A Practical Guide to Planning & Planting 
Mark Rumary 
Sterling Publishing Company, Incorporated, 1995, 128pp.

Enjoy the pleasures of a vibrant, colorful and healthy garden, even if you live in an area with little rainfall or where sandy soils are present. Discover the innovative landscaping techniques known as “xeriscaping” with topics covered on designs and planting schemes, seasonal tasks, plant varieties, maintenance and irrigation.

The Water Saving Garden cover

The Water-Saving Garden: How to Grow a Gorgeous Garden with a Lot Less Water
Pam Penick
Ten Speed Press, 2016, 240pp.

Given the persistent drought, conserving water is more important than ever—but that doesn’t mean your gardening options are limited to cacti and rocks. This book provides gardeners and homeowners with a diverse array of techniques and plentiful inspiration for creating outdoor spaces that are so beautiful and inviting, it’s hard to believe they are water-thrifty. 

Xeriscape Handbook

Xeriscape Handbook 
American Water Works Association (AWWA)
Fulcrum Publishing, 1999, 142pp.

Offers a practical approach to creating and maintaining a landscape in tune with the environment. Useful for new and experienced resource-wise gardeners, this book pulls together the basic elements of a successful garden. Basic principles of xeriscape gardening covered with many photographs, and a sample landscape plan.


Xeriscaping: Planning and Planting Low-Water Gardens 
Mark Rumary 
Sterling Publishing Co., Inc. 2001, 128pp.

Innovative landscaping techniques for plant zoning, appropriate planning, soil improvement 'efficient irrigation' suitable maintenance techniques, and plant selection. Many full-color photographs included. A practical guide for designing and maintaining a thriving garden with low-water needs. Design scheme, plant list, and soil information.


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