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4 Water, Xeriscapes and Native Plants - Essay Example

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Water, Xeriscape, and Native Plants I.D. Name of the University Water, Xeriscape, and Native Plants Part 1: Water Issues of Southern California California is a south western state of USA and basically it has a semi-arid to arid climate and a rugged landform…
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Essay 4 Water, Xeriscapes and Native Plants
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4 Water, Xeriscapes and Native Plants

Requirement of seasonal variations of irrigation and water distribution systems remains a major puzzle in the way of solving urban water usage issues (Dzieglielewski et al, 1990). Open-air conservation of water would call for an imperative policy focus throughout several divisions of the state. Such policy restructuring would delimit the enhancements in water demand and free up the existing water supplies that would accommodate new constructions and residents. One of the essentials of the policy framework would include water-efficient changes in landscaping practices. (Hanak and Davis, 2006) Now, in order to change the landscaping practices, individuals and agencies must concentrate on a major aspect of American manmade landscapes: The lawns. In USA, people are generally fond of lawns and they are preferred for both purposes (Government buildings, parks, military barracks, etc.) and domestic architecture (cottages, bungalows, community housing, etc.) (Ratliffe, 2002). However, lawns are not water-efficient, and they can be considered as water costly landscapes for a state like California. When people are advised to avoid creating lawns, some individuals think that the Government has no right to restrict the usage of water since they are paying for it. Therefore, they neglect the fact that the lawns are water costly and delimiting the extent of lawns can eventually help their own generations in the long run. Such behavior can thus be explained by the lack of education and training in water management. (California Urban Water Conservation Council, 2005) Next, people start arguing that they have the basic freedom and right to have single-family houses if they can afford it. Single-family homes may increase water consumption due to more distribution requirements and less organized community use of the water supplies. In the case of single-family homes, a considerable percentage of the households do not deploy irrigated landscaping in their gardens and adjacent plots, which invariably consist of lawns (Water Resources Engineering, Inc, 2002). This is an unwise reasoning since personal will cannot be more important than community wellbeing. Another argument is that lawns have more greenery which is friendly towards the environment and its air quality. This is a sort of excessive simplification of the environmental issues. The fact is that we need considerable number of mowers to maintain the lawns. The mowers increase air pollution and consume lots of energy. Moreover, excess water is necessitated due to the trimming, sprinkling, and gardening requirements. (Department of Water Resources, 2004; Ratliffe, 2002) Part 2: Replacing Lawns with Xeriscaped Gardens In the context of water conservation, xeriscaped gardens can be a better alternative to lawns. Xeriscaping is a method of landscaping, which minimizes requirement and use of water. Xeriscape actually deploys smarter ways for saving water and suite the climatic needs of the area it is deployed wherein. (Ellefson and Winger, 2004) In general gardening and decorative architectural designs, various decorative and even foreign plants are grown alongside the lawns. Plants, which have natural requirements appropriate with respect to the local vegetation and climate, are often neglected. In the case of arid and semi-arid parts of California, most of the decorative plants and expansive ... Read More
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