Tips for a Tahoe Friendly Garden Design

Hot, humid and smoky in the Sierras. Climate change is here, and whether we agree on the cause or disagree, I can no longer trust the USDA zone classification. Plants that should thrive here, are struggling, and plants I wouldn’t usually recommend are doing astonishingly well. I must say that it does concern me and sometimes I feel a bit overwhelmed. But there are things we can do, and it still looks great as the picture shows!

  1. No sod, It requires lots of water, fertilizer and the constant mowing. (One push lawn mower equals the same emissions as 11 cars per hour and ride-on mower 34 cars per hour). Google it if you don’t believe me.
  2. Install plants that are hardy and grown in a similar climate.
  3. Put mulch around the plants to keep the moisture in. (Less water).
  4. After a period, reduce the water amount and just water when there is a dry spell and the  plants need a boost.
  5. I don’t use fertilizer on plants, They will do just fine on their own. Fertilizer should be used only if there is an issue. (You wouldn’t give your kid antibiotics as a preventive, would you?).
  6. Artificial Turf is great! Looks good too! (Not astro-turf, thats gone the way of the 8 track player).
  7. Be aware, putting a fire pit under a Pine tree, might be bad. (I’m just saying).

If we all just do a little bit we can make a big change for the better while still having beautiful gardens. I don’t have kids, but I do have nieces and nephews and I would like them to have a future where they can have the world as I have had it: clean air, quiet woods, babbling brooks (I can make you one!) and where winter happens in the winter and summer happens, well you know!