Monday, February 24, 2014


It’s in the news: California officially has a drought and it’s time to use less water. One great way to save water is to landscape your garden with native plants which are best suited to our environment. Monrovia Library has a selection of books on this topic that will get you thinking and planning.

The Sunset Magazine book series is a terrific source of do-it-yourself information. Sunset’s Desert Gardening shows you how to use local plants, particularly cacti and succulents, and how to get started with container gardening—an alternative to big landscape projects. Its when-to-plant calendar is really useful.

Color photos and descriptions of individual plants make Low Water Use Plants for California and the Southwest by Carol Shuler a very practical book. The lists of drought-tolerant trees, ground covers and flowering plants will be helpful when you visit nurseries to see what's available.

Native Gardens for Dry Climates by Sally Wasowski is an introduction to native alternative plants, including trees. The book explains how our local climate and soil allows you to have a green, colorful and lush garden without growing water guzzling plants.

Reimagining the California Lawn by Carol Bornstein answers the question of how to replace that traditional front lawn. The book’s native plant list is thorough and the suggestions to also use hardscape (rocks) will get you thinking about what the front of the house would look like without grass. The color photos of examples of re-imagined lawns will inspire you.
Monrovia’s librarians can help you find many other water wise resources. The Theodore Payne Foundation for Wildflowers & Native Plants is located in nearby Sun Valley. Its mission is to promote and propagate California drought-tolerant plants and it offers programs and workshops. The Foundation’s website is:       

These books make great reading in advance of the the Water Conservation and Food Gardens program on March 20, 2:30 - 3:30 p.m., in the Library Community Room. 


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