Tuesday, February 16, 2010


Hi I’m Ben Edgar from Blue Nikau Landscaping based in the Whangarei Region of Northland New Zealand.
We are quality landscape design, construction and maintenance company and that also has a plant nursery.
Northland is in a particularly serious drought and we are seeing plantings fail and receiving a lot of queries about ‘drought proof landscaping’ particularly in our east coastal region.
Some pointers.
1. Plant selection. Native New Zealand plants are adapted to our climate and soil conditions, use them in landscaping. Plants from around the world can also be selected for drought tolerance too for different themed gardens like bold architectural succulents, some palms, subtropicals and Mediterranean plants.
2. Soil improvement. Adding organic materials or water retention crystals to the soil will improve water holding capacity.
3.Mulching over soil with a 100mm layer of bark, wood chip, untreated saw dust etc will insulate the soil from heat, slow evaporation and weeds too! Also when it does rain again, and that can be very heavy in Northland, the mulch stops soil erosion. I prefer these organic mulches to plastic matting which is unsightly and doesn’t bio-degrade and feed the soil.
4. Group water requiring plants like vegetable beds or a tropical courtyard close by so a drip irrigation system(efficient water use) can be installed or grey water recycled from washing machines or baths!
I’ll sign off now and top-up the mulch.

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