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With water becoming a scarce commodity in Santa Cruz county and most of California, it has become increasingly apparent that the public should be taking steps to decrease water consumption. A great way to do this is by planting drought tolerant plants in your yard. Because Santa Cruz county is arguably one of the most beautiful places in the US, if not the whole world, and tourist season is upon us! So, save your trips to the beach for off days such as the middle of the week, and spend your weekends at home working in the garden.

Ground Cover

  • Dymondia Margartae – Also known as Silver Carpet. Native to the coastal regions of South Africa. Best in full sun, and well drained soil. Also, it is deer resistant, meaning that while deer may snack on it they prefer other types of vegetation.
  • Erigeron karvinskianus – This ground covering is also referred to as the Spanish Daisy. It has low water requirements once established. Spanish Daisy can attract bees and butterflies, and likes full sun to partial shade.
  • Festuca – It is often used to combat soil erosion, and grows rapidly, even in what can be considered barren land. It is low maintenance and can a lush look to your yard.


  • Eschscholzia californica – The California poppy! This vibrant flower is best grown as an annual in full sun with soil that drains well.
  • Sphaeralcea ambigua – Also known as the apricot mallow, this perennial shrub is native to California, Utah, Arizona, and New Mexico. It grows best in desert soil. Natural rainfall is the best method for watering this plant, however increased watering from humankind can incease flowering.
  • Lupinus – Commonly, known as Lupine or bluebonnet. Many different varities and come in a plethora of colors.

Trees & Shrubbery

  • Aesculus californica – The California Buckeye tree grows to approximately 22 feet high. It can be a great resource for shade until the late summer, when it typically loses its leaves. Supplemented watering can help it retain its leaves for a longer period of time.
  • Brachychiton acerifolius – This tree can reach heights of up to 60 feet. It does well in a variety of different types of soil. They can also handle varying degrees of sun exposure.
  • Lagerstroemia – Better known as Crape (or Crepe) Myrtle this beautiful flowering tree is usually associated with the south. It does require a bit of watering in its first few years of life in order to become established, but after that it can survive with very little watering.

Succulents are also an excellent choice for the area, and there are many different types can fit your needs. Some of our favorite places to buy drought tolerant plants include Redwood Nursery in Santa Cruz, Alladin Nursery in Watsonville, and Scarborough Gardens in Scotts Valley.

The Madani team and ROOM Real Estate have been helping home buyers and sellers in Santa Cruz County for almost two decades. Equipped with a large team of dedicated agents and staff, ROOM Real Estate works tirelessly to help its clients accomplish their real estate goals. We are here for you; and all of your real estate related needs.

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