By Ava Torre-Bueno.
This highly interactive web page from the San Diego County Water Authority pretty much has everything you’ll need to know to transform your garden to a low-water paradise: watersmartsdlandscaping.org.
Here’s a short Union-Tribune article, followed by a long, clickable list of other articles they’ve run about low-water gardening: sandiegouniontribune.com/lifestyle/homeand-garden/sdut-watersmart-website-landscape-designs- 2014sep12-story.html
The County Water Authority has another online guide (you can order a free hard copy as well) called San Diego Sustainable Landscape Guidelines: A Watershed Approach To Landscaping: watersmartsd.org/sites/default/files/ slp_guidelines_final_10-13-15r_0.pdf. This guide is about rethinking your whole property so you can be your own watershed manager. Sinking ALL the water from the first rain of the season into the ground on your property cleans the water and keeps toxins out of the larger watershed.
Back in June, I shared my experience with creating a run-off garden at sites.google.com/site/plantingtherain/. What I would do differently now is to dig a bit deeper and bury the trash can lower by at least half a foot than I did. Maybe if I ever have a mad fit of energy, I’ll pull all the rocks out and dig deeper, but for now, this has worked well to absorb hundreds of gallons of water into the ground with every rainfall.