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A New Paradigm in Landscape Maintenance

Articles: A New Paradigm in Landscape Maintenance

Thanks to California’s strict new watering regulations, sustainable landscapes, and the many beneficial environmental benefits they provide, are quickly taking root, pun intended. Homeowners today are converting gardens and large areas of water-thirsty turf to low-water, sustainable landscapes at a remarkable rate. These new gardens represent a new paradigm in horticulture. And how we as an industry maintain these new landscapes is a question that has not yet been resolved.

The California landscape maintenance industry represents $25 billion in sales and nearly 258,000 jobs, a mammoth industry that relies on mostly obsolete tools and a workforce lacking the experience to properly maintain these new gardens. The lawn mower, hedge trimmer, edger, string trimmer, and blower have no place in sustainable landscapes. And skills such as plant identification, pruning techniques, and an understanding of natural systems are largely missing.

Skillful hand pruning is an important practice in a sustainable landscape. Photo: courtesy of Joh Beaudry

How did we get here?

To understand how we inherited such a water-...


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Articles: Calochortophilia: A Californian’s Love Affair with a Genus by Katherine Renz

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