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Arizona Edition: Native Plants Good for Wildlife and Your Water Bill

Arizona Edition

The American southwest is in the midst of a decade's long drought, and as people and communities look for ways to save water and contribute to a better environment, one deeply rooted option is native plants.

On this episode of Arizona Edition, host Lou gum visits a greenhouse of native plants.

Chuparosa, screwbean mesquite, ironwood, yellow bells, desert willow, globe mallow, desert lavender...

These are plants you find in the deserts of southwest Arizona. Many with a particular ability to thrive in Yuma’s hot and arid, but also varied, conditions.

Xeriscaping is a process of landscaping or gardening with a goal of reducing or eliminating the need for water.

Nationally, about 30 percent of the water a household uses is used outside – but in the west, that percentage goes up, obviously due to hot and dryer climates but also because much of what is in your yard today isn’t really equipped to be there without your help.

Native plants are.

Today's guests include Janine Lane, urban horticulturist at the University of Arizona’s cooperative extension program in Yuma, and some of the volunteers, Yuma Master Gardners, who are growing native plants from seeds and cuttings.

We’ll learn about the individual plants, how they benefit wildlife, how they can help you use less water in your yard and how the local greenhouse is trying to make them easier to get.

Lou grew up in Tucson and has a long family history in the state of Arizona. He began his public radio career in 1988 at KNAU in Flagstaff as a classical music DJ and has been hooked on public radio since, transitioning to news after trying his hand at several other careers in publishing and commercial broadcasting. Lou has a degree in American Studies from Arizona State University and was KAWC's Morning Edition host for two and half years before becoming News and Operations Director.
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