Is Your Landscape Central Valley Friendly?
FRESNO -- Residents and businesses who strive to protect and conserve our Valley’s natural resources by opting for drought-tolerant landscapes are encouraged to apply for the 3rd annual Central Valley Friendly Landscaping Awards by the May 31 deadline.

The landscape awards program is open to residential gardens and, for the first time, commercial landscapes within the Fresno/Clovis metropolitan area. This is the first year businesses have been encouraged to apply under a separate commercial category.

The goal of the program is to recognize landscapes as a community model, encouraging others to protect and conserve our water and other natural resources by planting drought-tolerant plants and flowers. Residents and business with landscapes that conserve water, build healthy soil, save energy and reduce garden waste are eligible to apply.

Applicants must use the required practices and landscape principles outlined in the garden checklist on the Central Valley Friendly Landscape website at There are seven Landscape Principles that can be applied to a Central Valley Friendly landscape:

  • Conserve Water and Ensure Water Quality
  • Conserve Energy and Air Quality
  • Nurture the Soil
  • Reduce Garden Waste
  • Practice Integrated Pest Management (IPM)
  • Select Appropriate Plants
  • Create Habitat and Protect Wildlife
These principles, along with the nine required practices, can all be found on the website along with a residential and commercial checklist to help interested applicants determine how Central Valley-friendly their landscaping actually is.

“Our hope is that recognized Central Valley Friendly landscapes will inspire others and really showcase the beauty and functionality a Central Valley Friendly garden can offer,” said Nora Laikam, water conservation program supervisor for the City of Fresno. “We want people to know that a Central Valley Friendly Landscape doesn’t have to be a desert landscape. These model gardens will include anything from native wildlife habitats to Mediterranean retreats, to an edible kitchen garden.”

The application period runs through May 31, 2013. Award recipients will be notified by September 2013 and will be honored at a public awards event on Oct. 12, 2013, at the Clovis Botanical Garden.

Residential winners will receive an 18-inch Margaret Hudson quail sculpture and Commercial winners will receive an artist designed recognition plaque. A Central Valley Friendly Landscaping yard sign will be displayed by all the winners in their landscape.

The program is supported through a partnership of the cities of Fresno and Clovis, UCCE Master Gardener Program, Fresno Metropolitan Flood Control District and Clovis Botanical Garden.

For more information, or to submit an entry, please visit or call the City of Fresno Water Conservation Program: 621-5480.

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