Irrigation-free update

irrigation-free landscape, Minneapolis, Minnesota, prairieform, xeriscape, water conservation, landscape design

The Irrigation-Free Landscape has been doing quite a bit of growing these past couple of weeks. The Salvias are immense and blooming profusely (and these were actually the one plant we were thinking about removing, as they were having trouble dealing with dry conditions last summer. . . time will tell this summer. . . we are hoping their root systems have grown enough to take on whatever the weather brings them), the sedges over doubled in size from last year, the smokebushes finally established and growing well. To see how much things have grown in the past three weeks, here is a photo from a bit over two weeks ago:
irrigation-free landscape, minneapolis, minnesota, prairieform, landscape design, xeriscape, water conservation

For more photos from the past weeks, come to our Facebook page, and please do “like” us while you are there. It helps us spread the word about the work on water conservation and design we are doing.

Update from the irrigation-free homefront

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The Irrigation-Free Landscape, late May 2013

The Irrigation-Free Landscape has awakened from its extended winter slumber and is coming back to life slowly but surely, as everything has been late to come up this year. However, with ample amounts of rainfall, the cool-season grasses and sedges have been growing at a clip, and the Salvias and lavenders and other plants that take on more grey/blue tones as spring segues into summer are nearly as green as the grasses. Little is in flower save a few Allium bulbs that are just about to bloom, but the Salvias should be on their way shortly. The native perennials of the prairie are slow to bloom and won’t come on until late June/early July, which is all the more reason why we plant plants like Salvias and catmints and the like – for early bloom color and good early food sources for pollinators.

As a comparison of how the landscape has changed and will change color- and form-wise over time, below is a photo taken last August from virtually the same spot.

Come to the Mother Earth Gardens winter seminar on the irrigation-free landscape

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We will be giving a seminar on the Irrigation-Free Landscape on Februrary 4 as part of the Mother Earth Gardens winter seminar series. The seminar will cover the nuts and bolts of the Irrigation-Free Landscape, how it works, what we have learned from the first pilot landscape, and how you can apply some of these lessons and tips to your own landscape or garden. The seminar starts at 7:00 p.m. and will be held at the Riverview Wine Bar, located across from Mother Earth Gardens at 3745 42nd Avenue South, Minneapolis, MN. The event is free of charge, but the nursery asks that you RSVP to the following email address: info@motherearthgarden.com. The seminar line-up contains tons of informative and instructive seminars on landscapes and sustainability. To check out the other speakers, click here.

What we do in winter. . .


Indian grass under a blanket of snow in a PRAIRIEFORM landscape

People ask what we do in winter here when we can’t be outside installing landscapes. This year we are spending the season giving presentations on the irrigation-free landscape, what we have learned, and what are next steps are. As far as those next steps go, we are searching out new sites with new variables and wider audiences for new irrigation-free landscape installations. If you are interested in having us give a powerpoint presentation (very visual, minimal text, and we promise we don’t just read off of lists on the screen), contact us: kamp@prairieform.com .

Last step for the irrigation-free landscape: bulbs

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Planting Allium giganteum in late fall in the Irrigation-Free Landscape

The Irrigation-Free Landscape is almost ready for its winter slumber. Just before it goes to sleep, we wanted to plant some bulbs to ensure good late-spring color. The perfect bulb for a cold-climate but drought-prone garden is Allium. It will appreciate the drier conditions in the garden and reward you with electric-purple globes of color come late spring. Leave the spent seedheads on through summer to add additional form, texture, and color to the landscape. Loveliness.