Why Autumn Is a Great Time of Year for Xeriscaping

Yes, the summer is over and the kids have gone back to school, but it’s not too late to xeriscape your yard. The fall can be a fantastic time to plant, especially when you’re working with perennials that won’t need a lot of water.


What is xeriscaping?

If you can believe it, the term was born here in Colorado in the early 1980s. It used to mostly mean a lot of rock, but the term has evolved to include a lot of great local flora that looks good year round and needs very little water or maintenance.

Xeriscaping is a great way to cut back on your water bill. If you don’t have to water grass and thirsty plants, you might be surprised by how little water your showers, dishwashers and washing machines use in comparison.

Why fall is a good time for it

First of all, any time you decide to do xeriscaping is probably a good time for it as long as the ground isn’t frozen in the heart of our Colorado winters. However, there are a few reasons autumn can be an advantageous time to plant.

  • Contractors

    Landscapers are wildly busy in the spring helping prepare yards for the summer, not to mention the addition of fire mitigation to their schedules in preparation for fire season in the Pikes Peak Region. The landscapers have more time and will be more available to help you in the fall.

  • Garden sales

    Since most people quit thinking about planting at the end of the summer, garden centers often have sales on some of their plants that they will want to sell before winter settles in. That means you could get a deal on some of those colorful no- and low-water plants.

  • Prepared for spring

    You won’t have to worry about hunting for landscapers in the spring because your xeriscaping will be complete. The bushes and flowers you plant will primarily be perennials that come back year after year. Even if they lose their leaves and don’t look very pretty through the winter, they should be well established and ready to grow again in the spring.

  • Cooler temperatures

    Even though most xeriscaping plants are OK in the heat, they will likely experience less shock and grow better if they’re planted when the weather is cooler.

The Energy Resource Center can provide some guidance to southern Colorado homeowners interested in xeriscaping and reducing their water bills. We’re not landscapers, but can provide home energy audits that will help you determine new ways to save on your utility bills. The Energy Resource Center helps Colorado families in El Paso, Teller, Fremont, Elbert, Douglas, Alamosa, Conejos, Costilla, Mineral, Saguache and Rio Grande counties,  and the same services for a small fee to those who don’t qualify. All fees support the nonprofit’s charitable efforts.