Alternative yard options to save water


Tyler White

I blame the sun for our problems.

Bennett Lane, Writer

Yards are perfect for many things, but they don’t have to be perfect for fulfilling a false ideal and wasting water! Your yard is your home, your canvas, your voice.

In January, Governor Jerry Brown declared California in a drought State of Emergency. We’re heading into our fourth year of drought, and restrictions are being implemented in order to conserve water. According to The City of Carlsbad website, “The Carlsbad Municipal Water District is in a stage two “Drought Alert,” meaning mandatory water restrictions are “in effect.” These restrictions include restaurants being told not to serve water unless requested, limits to decorative fountain use and watering times for yards.

The vast majority of California is arid, there’s no doubt about that. An image of what California is has been created, fabricated and romanticized beyond reality. Most plant life has be placed and artificially kept in order to support this idea that the state is some kind of paradisiacal vacation destination. Face it, palm trees are not native to here.

In light of the major drought California has found itself in, it becomes apparent that some habits and day to day norms must be broken and changed in order to adapt, and maybe even the expectations set on California. One way to help out would be an alternate layout for yards. The classical idea of a yard, a lush, deep bed of green, along with its literal embodiment, needs to die. (If you want to calculate your total water usage, here is a useful calculator)

Here are some alternatives that could help cut down costs, maintenance and water waste:

The Perfect Kickback Location: Everybody likes a good kickback, and you don’t need a lush yard to enjoy yours! Turn those sprinklers off, let the grass brown some, and install the best idea you’ve ever had. A skate ramp for those rad dudes and dudettes that need some shred beneath their feet when they’re not called to the sea for cleansing release. Trampoline for those less daring, possibly younger (and maybe quirky) individuals that don’t quite want to risk falling vertically on their lateral just yet. Top it all off with a fire pit for all the late night s’more cooking get-together get-to-know-yous, and you’ve got yourself the hangout destination of the town.

The Perfect Aesthetic: This is it- all you photo grabbing, tumblr scrolling, visually appealing people out there! Your opportunity to create your own world, your own domain of poetic grandeur. Clouds of incense, low rung necklaces, artfully placed rodent skeletons and a camera. Run wild through the rawness of your minimalistic yard. As the weeks go by, you will witness your life being brought back to the bare, necessary essentials as the distortion of grass and plant life are left in the figurative and literal dirt. Perspiration is all the liquid you need for inspiration!

The Perfect Message: When we get down to it though, what more incentive do we need to cut down on water waste than for preserving a valuable resource we are lucky to have in the first place? Omit everything and just think about what your water could do. California is in a drought, use your water wisely.