SustainaBlue Landscapes eNewsletter
Edition 14
November/December 2018
Take our quick 2-minute survey.
SMWD values your input!
Participants have the option to enter into a raffle to win a 
$20 Home Depot gift card!

We want to cater to your interests regarding outdoor sustainability! Your feedback will help guide us to create content that will be useful for you.

Thank you for participating!
CLICK HERE for the survey.

For more details on how to use the Watering Index  and how to create a custom watering schedule using the online Watering Calculator,
visit our website

  ◦ Tip of the Month 
It's that time of year again.
It's rainy season!

The rain is finally here, so take advantage of it!
Get rain barrels and collect the rain water we'll get throughout this winter season.

Get up to 2 rain barrels for your home and receive a $35 rebate for each barrel.

Did you know that during a
1" rain event, you can  capture
620 gallons of rainfall from a
1,000 square foot roof?
Don't forget about the indoors!
Do you have a toilet leak?
Watch this video and learn how to check.
Do You Have a Toilet Leak?
Toilets are the most common cause
of indoor water leaks.
◦ Plant of the Month 
Grevillea 'Superb'
  • Grevilleas are in the proteaceae family and are commonly grown in Australia.
  • Approximately 12 different varieties are grown in California, attracting birds, bees, and butterflies all year long.
  • They can be grown in clay loam to sandy soil, preferring slightly acid pH.
  • Do not fertilize with phosphorus.
  • Grevilleas blend well with the low water users in the garden.
  • Grevilleas grow to about 5' tall by 5' wide
Got Mulch?
Are you planning on reapplying mulch in your garden?
CLICK HERE to try out this mulch calculator!

The benefits of mulch in the garden are numerous:
  • reduces the water requirements of plants
  • insulates the soil from extreme hot or cold temperatures
  • suppresses weeds
  • prevents soil compaction 
  • reduces soil erosion and dust
Organic Mulch
Inorganic Mulch
Pine Needles (*)
Rocks/Decorative Gravel
Shredded Western Red Cedar (*) Decomposed Granite
Fresh Ground Tree Mulch Landscape Fabric (permeable)
Med. Pine Bark Nuggets Shredded Rubber (*)
Composted Wood Chips
Cocoa Mulch
Hardwood Mulch (colored/uncolored)

(*) Extreme fire danger near a home.
High flame height, rate of fire spread,
and temperature. Keep at least 30'
away from structures.

2" to 3" thick works best! Thicker layers can lead to problems with rodent or insect infestations.

◦ More resources for you to check out ◦  
Prep Your Yard for
Winter Showers
Why pay for water during a rain event when you can get it for free?
  1. Add mulch to help reduce evaporation, prevent erosion, and to make your yard like a sponge for any rain we receive.
  2. Clear out rain gutters before and after a rain event. Check to make sure all debris is removed.
  3. Reset your irrigation system. If rain is expected, adjust your irrigation system to avoid overwatering and to reduce runoff. 
Curious about rainwater harvesting?
CLICK HERE to check out the full article from the Chino Basin Water Conservation District.
All You Need to Know
About Mulch Types
If you plan to insulate your soil with mulch before the seasons change,
first learn which type of material
best meets your needs.

CLICK HERE for the full article.
◦ December In the Natural Garden 

CLICK HERE to read the full article

from Tree of Life Nursery.
  • Our gardens have settled into their quiet time when rain and wind refresh, the sun's low arc across the sky provides light but not much heat, and plants start their preparations for spring.
  • Natural gardens thrive on rainfall alone, unless we have another super dry winter, in which case you may have to provide a deep soak, not to just keep your plants alive, but more in order to help them get ready for spring.
  • Cool season weeds are germinating. Pull them or use a hoe to get rid of them as soon as possible. Easier to eradicate them when they are small.
  • Soils are dipping into their coldest temperatures in winter. If you applied fertilizer in the fall, you're set. If not, best to wait until early spring.
 Upcoming Classes & Events by Others 
Master Gardeners of  O.C.
Class @  Reata Park

Saturday, December 8th @ 9:00am
Native Plants

Selecting the right native plants will not only help you use less water, they will also provide sustenance for native insects, and as a result, food for native birds. Learn how to plant natives so they thrive and require little maintenance.

*FREE classes and events 

Saturday, December 15th @  9:30am
Aromatherapy in the California Garden

Saturday, December 22nd @  9:30am
Winter Solstice: Tree Planting & Holiday Sale

Saturday, December 29th @ 9:30am
Winter Tour
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Santa Margarita Water District
Water Use Efficiency  |  949-459-6593  |
26111 Antonio Parkway
Rancho Santa Margarita, CA 92688