The Dry Garden: “Capacity” = good nurseries

Posted on | January 7, 2011 | 2 Comments

The potential for gardeners here to conserve water while glorying in the California experience is as big as the state. Yet most of us don’t seize it. According to local water managers, the problem is “capacity.”

By capacity, they refer to the ability of chain home improvement stores to stock drought-tolerant native and Mediterranean-climate plants alongside water-hungry turf. Building native-plant capacity in big-box stores is tough. The inventory get watered to death by untrained staff, who don’t know what the plants are much less what they need. So “capacity” tends to be code for “forget about it” when the subject of water conservation comes up.

Well, water managers, reality check. Nursery capacity for native plants is increasing, albeit slowly. A network of independent specialist nurseries is emerging. Most of these not only have trained staff to sell native plants but also offer courses on how to design gardens and how to tend those new Edens.

Click here to keep reading The Dry Garden in the Los Angeles Times. For January listings of Dry Garden Events, click here.


2 Responses to “The Dry Garden: “Capacity” = good nurseries”

  1. antigonum cajan
    January 8th, 2011 @ 4:23 pm

    As a collector, propagating only what is related to my urban environment, microclimate and biodiversity, I do not depend at all from nurseries. Less than ten species over my one hundred total was bought in one.

  2. susan hirsch
    June 18th, 2011 @ 6:21 pm

    Love that succulent shot! Hopefully gardeners will slowly swing over to independent nurseries with their more interesting inventory!

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