Request a Proposal

Water wise Landscapting

WHAT IS WATER-WISE LANDSCAPING?

Water-wise landscaping is the use of native plants and hardscape materials that are drought-resistant, and generally require less water and maintenance. This type of landscaping is becoming increasingly important as water becomes more scarce in Colorado. It is important to remember, when transitioning to a water-wise landscape, to be patient. It takes time for plants to become large, beautiful, and colorful, but it will happen.

BENEFITS

Water-wise landscapes require less irrigation and overall less general maintenance. These landscapes reduce water consumption and therefore save money. Water-wise landscapes have the ability to withstand droughts and help to create a healthier, more eco-friendly yard.

WHY DOES THIS MATTER?

Although Denver has not declared a drought, as of June 2023, water is becoming increasingly scarce in the state of Colorado. It is important to conserve this limited resource while we can. One of the ways we can do this is by removing turf lawns and transitioning to a water- wise lawn that requires less water and is able to withstand future droughts.

Rebates & Assistance Available for Water-Wise Projects.

Denver Water

  • Up to $3/sprinkler head
  • Customers who live in a condo or HOA are still eligible for a rebate – must contact their community manager for the water account number to apply
  • Up to a $75 rebate
  • Customers who live in a condo or HOA are still eligible for a rebate – must contact their community manager for the water account number to apply
  • Up to a $100 rebate
  • Customers who live in a condo or HOA are still eligible for a rebate – must contact their community manager for the water account number to apply

Aurora Water

  • Covers the cost of all materials (within project approval) for converting lawns to water-wise landscapes.
  • Smart Controller = rebate based on project scope
  • Rain Sensors = $15/each wired or $50/each wireless
  • Soil Moisture Sensors = $100/each
  • Gear-Driven Rotor Sprinklers = $12/each
  • Pop-Up Sprinkler Bodies = $9/each
  • High-Efficiency Nozzles = $6/each
  • Spray-to-Drip Conversion = $200/zone
  • Up to $100 for switching to a 0.8 gpf toilet, from 1.6 gpf or more
  • If a homeowner whose HOA pays your water bill, you are still eligible. You will receive a check to your home, rather than a credit on your water bill.
  • Allows properties with large irrigation systems to run their systems more than 3 days per week.
  • Free, flexible, in-person, on-demand classes about efficient watering, water-wise landscapes, drought-tolerant plants and more.
  • Free indoor and outdoor water assessments to determine starting point with recommendations on how to update your system and save money.

If your water district is not listed above, reach out to CAP Management for more information.

Parker Water & Sanitary District

  • Up to $5/head, max of $100/single family home or commercial lot & max of $500/HOA or multi-family development
  • Reimbursed 50% of cost of sensor with a max of $50
  • Limit of 1 rain sensor & no additional rebate available if SMART controller includes rain sensor
  • $50/single family home, commercial lot, or HOA
  • Limit of 1 controller

Limited to a one time rebate per equipment type for each household, commercial property, multi-family development or HOA. All rebates will be applied directly to the billing statement for the account listed within 1-2 billing cycles.

Resource Central

  • Professionally designed, water-wise, perennial garden kits to ensure a smooth transition to a water-wise garden.
  • Order your box online and pick it up to take home and start planting.
  • Throughout May to September, a team of workers will cut, remove, and compost as little as 200 square feet of maintained lawn.
  • Commit to replacing at least 200 SF of existing, maintained lawn and agree to replacing with water-wise landscaping.
  • $2.50/SF + $100 deposit
  • Irrigation audit that provides information on the performance of your system, with recommendations on how to improve efficiency and reduce water waste.

Discounts available for some water districts. Denver, Aurora, and Parker do not apply.

Colorado Water Conservation Board

If your water district is not listed above, reach out to CAP Management for more information.

Estimated Cost & Timeline

The cost & timeline of making the switch to a water-wise landscape depends on the style you are looking the implement, the location and climate where you are doing the project, the type of plants and rockeries being used, and lastly the quality of the soil and amendments used. Additionally, it is important to remember that while the upfront cost may seem large, the long-term savings on water-bills and maintenance costs will also be large.

Yard Size Estimated Cost (Labor & Materials Included)
500 SF $2,500 – $10,000
1,000 SF $5,000 – $20,000
1,250 SF $6,250 – $25,000
1,500 SF $7,500 – $30,000
2,000 SF $10,000 – $40,000

Varies depending on project. Source: How Much Does Xeriscaping Cost in 2023?

Step 1

Create a Map of Your Current Yard & Irrigation System

Step 2

    Design Your Future & Ideal Landscape
  • Group plants together that require similar amounts of sunlight and water.

Step 3

Select Your Water-Wise Plants & Features

Step 4

    Remove Turf Options:
  • Resource Central Law Removal Service
    • Submit application by March
    • Removal service operates from May-September
  • Sod Cutter
    • Manually remove turf using a sod cutter
    • On average, 100 SF of turf can be manually removed by 2 people per hour
  • Solarization
    • Cover turf with plastic sheet that will kill your grass
    • Anywhere between 6 weeks and 6 months
  • Sheet Covering
    • Cover turf with newspaper or cardboard & layer with organic matter
    • On average, 6 months (not good for large spaces)

Step 5

    Prep Soil & Start Planting
  • Healthy soil = happy plants!
  • Loosen up the soil before planting native plants.
  • Mulch provides many benefits including insulating the soil, protecting from erosion, and conserving moisture.

Source: H2Overhaul: A Water-Wise Landscape Transformation Kit

Other Resources:

Relevant Legislation:

How To:

Benefits:

Cost & Timeline:

Academic Articles:

Inspiring Books:

More Programs Outside of Denver: