Xeriscaping is a sustainable form of landscaping that involves designing yards and gardens to require very little watering and maintenance, but to also provide a ton of visual appeal and interest. Sustainable landscapes are not only eco-friendly, but also tend to fare better in changing weather conditions. Xeriscaping is super convenient for the summer months, but many also don’t realize the benefits xeriscaping provides in the winter.
Mulch keeps it real
Because xeriscaped yards use a lot of mulch, usually in the form of rocks such as river rock and organic mulch such as cedar chips. Mulch provides a warm winter coat for your plants by stabilizing temperatures in the soil. It is a direct layer of insulation, protecting roots from frost damage and heaving caused by the freeze/thaw cycles we routinely see in the region. Come early thaws or the fullness of spring, mulch will continue to stabilize the soil temperature when the days are warming and the nights are still chilly.
Protection for your plants
Xeriscaping requires choosing plants that are well-suited to withstand Calgary’s cold winters. We choose drought-resistant plants that minimize water use and carefully design layouts so that taller trees are shading the shorter perennials. Water conservation is a significant concern in summer, which makes xeriscaping advantageous in the winter when watering is simply not possible due to the frozen ground. Xeriscaped gardens require less irrigation, making them suitable for the often-dry winter months in Calgary.
Aesthetic appeal in the winter
Xeriscaping can provide an attractive and unique winter landscape. Since xeriscaped yard are built on levels, generally using environmentally friendly retaining walls, they can be adorned with large winter planters full of spruce boughs, berry branches, and tied together with bright ribbons. Xeriscaped yards are perfect for displaying lovely winter decorations, such as inflatable Christmas balls and illuminated snowmen. Your yard can be lively and full of life during some of the darkest days of the winter.
Irrigation is required for xeriscaping
We would never suggest xeriscaping a yard without first installing underground irrigation. This would be something like building a house without a foundation. As the whole point of xeriscaping is to reduce the use of water, there is no point in moving forward with such a project without first installing water-saving devices such as underground sprinklers. These can be placed to directly feed your plants to reduce water waste dramatically.
While underground irrigation doesn’t necessarily provide much benefit in the winter, everyone knows how much time and water they save in the summer. If your system is properly blown out each fall, then as soon as it’s warm enough each spring, all you have to do is just set them and forget them.
Snow removal for xeriscaped yards
When our landscape design experts plan out our xeriscaped properties, we take care to plant trees and beds far enough away from the pavement to avoid risk of damage when shovelling. A good border is also important for xeriscaping to keep mulch in its place.
Xeriscaped yards actually provide a simpler way for snow removal than regularly landscaped yards. The flat areas offered by the retaining walls regularly incorporated in xeriscaped yards allow us plenty of room to pile snow. We take care to not pile snow directly on top of plants as this can damage them, however we can easily pile around the plants. When it begins to warm up, that snow melts begins to melt and provides moisture for your plants when it is typically very dry in Calgary.
When it comes to xeriscaped yards, if you are removing snow yourself we highly recommend the good old push broom in combination with the trusty shovel. It’s an extremely effective tool for quickly and safely removing snow from tricky and smaller areas of pavers, like your walkways, sideways, and driveways.
Let Mirage take care of your snow removal this winter
We at Mirage have three generations of history handling snow removal for residential and commercial properties around the city, and we have the knowledge and resources necessary to keep your property safe and clear of snow and ice for your family and your visitors. We invite any potential clients to check our track record by reading our online reviews, and we are happy to provide references upon request. Our services are always 100% guaranteed.
Contact us to learn more about our services and to start the winter season started off right.