One Garden at a Time

Go Native

Re "Slaking SoCal's thirst," Opinion, Jan.23

       Metropolitan Water District of Southern California chief Jeffrey Kightlinger omits an important part of the demand side of the water equation: the need to use less water for residential landscape irrigation. Low-flow toilets and shower heads aren't enough.
         Half of residential water use in Southern California is for landscape purposes such as keeping our lawns green. But the nonnative green lawn is inappropriate for a region that averages just 15 inches of rain annually. Native California plants, once established, use about one-seventh as much water as a green lawn. Birds, butterflies, native bee species and many other native insects and animals depend on plants that belong in our local ecosystem. Additional benefits of native gardens include reduced runoff, no fertilizer use and reduced lawn waste to be collected.
      It's time to reclaim the California environment for native species, one garden at a time.
            -Daniel Fink
             Beverly Hills

The writer is a board member at the Theodore Payne Foundation for Wild Flowers and Native Plants Inc.

from Los Angeles Times, Letters,  Sunday January 26, 2014

*Spotted my first wildflower of the season, one Blue Dick (Dichelostemma capitatum), while trekking through O'melveny Park in Granada Hills today.