As the drought continues, a look at our landscape plants and turf becomes essential. However, even more important than plant selection is the quantity and quality of soil your property has. Without good, deep soil no plant will thrive, no matter what amount of water you throw on it.
GardenVille, there is a location in Georgetown.
Texas A&M AgriLife Extension's The Urban Rancher program provides research and expersite on soils, among other topics.
Native Plant Resources
Texas A&M AgriLife Extension article "Keeping Your Lawn Alive During the Drought."
Aggie Horticulture provides a host of expertise on landscape plants, ornamentals, turfgrass, gardens.
Aggie Turf website has research on native turfgrasses.
City of Austin's Grow Green program includes a searchable database of plants, includes pictures.
The Williamson County Master Gardeners and visit their demonstration garden for ideas.
Williamson County Native Plant Society
The Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center
MowingDon't Cut Grass Too Low If the lawnmower is set higher, the longer grass can help shade the ground, hold moisture longer and help to fight off heat. We recommend cutting grass 1/2 to 3/4 inch at a time.
- Ideal heights for grasses are: St. Augustine grass 2-3", Bermuda 1.5-2", Zoysia 1.5-2" and Buffalo 2-3".
- Re-Use Grass Clippings Leaving the grass clippings on the ground can serve as mulch and fertilizer all-in-one. And it's free. Chemical fertilizers may not be needed during summer months.
Use mulch wherever possible around trees, in shrub beds, even potted plants, mulching to a depth of 3-6 inches. However you do not want to mulch to be mounded next to the trunk of the plant, often called "volcano mulching." It should be more saucer shaped so water will not run off or away from the plant. A flat mat of mulch allows the water to sink in.
Since mulch breaks down, it should be applied annually. For free mulch, if you are a City of Round Rock water customer, contact our Brush Recycling Center. Mulch also prevents weed growth, retains water, and insulates the soil and plant during cooler months.