Fighting Water Cops the Legal Way

New water restrictions have some San Diegans looking outside the home for solutions during the drought

San Diegans who change a toilet or showerhead make a dent in their water usage, but the ones who really want to cut back on the amount of water they're paying for need to take a walk around the house.

Yvonne and Bob Smith took the walk around their North Park home.

"I don't miss the grass at all," Yvonne said.

Instead of a dying, water-hogging lawn, the Smith home is now surrounded by a colorful array of drought-resistant native plants.

"The motivation, of course, was the water conservation we knew was coming up sooner or later," Yvonne added. "And that's what we wanted to create: something that was very natural to the California landscape."

To make the radical switch both in the front and back yard, the Smiths turned to Nature's Elements Landscaping's Jesse Laguna.

"Grass is really the thirstiest thing out there," Laguna said.

Laguna replaced the lawn with a laundry list of thriving plants. The biggest misconception when it comes to getting rid of water-thirsty plants is that you have to replace them with rocks and cactus.

"I  think the biggest thing they're concerned about when getting rid of the grass is what they're going to do next," Laguna said.

Laguna found a solution the Smiths now call home.

"Oh, it's beautiful -- it's very relaxing, and it's colorful -- we love it," Yvonne said.

The Smiths were able to hire a professional landscaper, but there are things homeowners can do themselves to cut back, including putting in drought-resistant plants, using drip systems and watching where the water goes.

Contact Us