DENVER – With spring landscape season nearly here, Denver-area families are participating in water conservation programs at a scorching pace, according to Resource Central, a nonprofit based in Boulder. Three times as many families have reserved drought-tolerant Garden In A Box kits this month – that’s 2200 xeriscape gardens in just two weeks – compared to the same period three years ago. And participation in the nonprofit’s free Water-Wise seminars have nearly doubled.
Garden In A Box is a regional water conservation program that provides an assortment of plants and flowers that can reduce outdoor water use by up to 60%. To encourage families to participate, Denver Water and other water providers throughout the region are offering $25 discounts.
“Local families are rethinking their grassy yards,” said Neal Lurie, president of Resource Central. “Traditional turf yards are surprisingly thirsty and expensive. After years of watering and mowing, people are starting to look at how drought-tolerant gardens can help simplify their yards.”
There are five new Garden In A Box kits this year, with a big focus on colors and pollinators including: Hummingbird Delight, Butterfly Bounty, and Purple Reign. Additional kits focus on vegetable gardens, shaded areas, sun-loving flowers, and attracting honeybees.
“The vision of the ideal landscape in the Front Range has changed dramatically,” added Mark Cassalia, a conservation leader at Denver Water. “We are hearing from our customers, landscape professionals and realtors that the ideal landscape includes a third entertaining space, a third in garden beds and finally some turf for the kids and dogs. The Garden-In-A-Box program is perfect for the DIY landscaper.”
The Garden In A Box program is one of the largest programs of its kind in the United States, helping Front Range families transition more than 1.4 million square feet of land to beautiful, low-water landscaping. This initiative has saved more than 100 million gallons of water since the program started in 1997.
Mother Nature may be contributing to the interest in this program this year. After a dry winter, Colorado’s snowpack is currently 33% below average statewide, though each water district collects water from different watersheds and sources. Low snow levels indicate greater risk of drought as the snow melts into rivers and reservoirs used by local communities.
“It’s heartening to see so many people embracing this program,” said Devon Booth, water program manager at Resource Central. “Garden In A Box makes water conservation simple – change happens one family at a time.”
Learn more about the Garden In A Box program at: ResourceCentral.org/gardens or 303.999.3820 x222. All gardens are Colorado-grown, pollinator-friendly, and available for pickup starting in May.
About Resource Central:
Founded in 1976, Resource Central is an innovative nonprofit dedicated to putting conservation into action. Its programs have helped nearly 500,000 families save water, reduce waste, and conserve energy. Learn more at ResourceCentral.org.