Here’s a xeriscaping strategy that also can justify fun shopping, or at least give your creativity a boost: Add art pieces and other nonplant color to your garden. Below are a few benefits and photo examples, mostly from my recent trip to Austin with the Garden Bloggers Fling.
First, art needs no watering. Aside from fountains or bird baths, garden art requires no water. So, you can tuck fun or colorful objects into your xeric landscape and save water and time by using art instead of plants. Barring deer or other critters breaking your objects, garden art can last for many years.
Art adds water-free year-round interest. Although you can plant for all-season or year-round color, the weather doesn’t always cooperate. We had a dry, cool spring that turned hot overnight. So, many of our spring-blooming plants did poorly. And where winters are cold, we get evergreen and white only. Pop a few art pieces or colorful containers into your garden for great garden views all winter.
Garden art can satisfy (or try to, anyway) the desire to renovate your landscape. I like to move our garden art around every so often as plants grow or we have empty spots to fill. It makes the garden just a little different without having to buy a new plant (at least until I decide a piece of art needs the perfect little live, green complement …). And you can add free garden art and have a fun DIY project by repurposing objects.
Combine function and visual interest. Painted walls, patterned chair cushions and containers all add color and break up the monotony of green foliage or brownish gravel.
You can shop local for garden art. We have many pieces of garden art acquired from small, local shops we visit on vacations or from our favorite places in neighboring towns. I saw lots of Texas stars in Austin, and imagine many of those were acquired at local nurseries and boutiques. Items not necessarily designed for the outdoor elements might work under a patio cover.
Assert your personality. Add whimsical pieces, collections, pieces with sentimental meaning or items of local interest.