Have questions about your landscape? the drought? need water-efficient tips? Ask Juan! Juan is IRWD's very own drought conservation specialist with more than 10 years experience in conservation. 

Fill out this form to submit your questions to Juan. 


What are your favorite drought friendly plants, especially ones that are hearty and easy to maintain?


Five of my favorites are Azurea Bush Germander, Concha California Lilac, Dwarf Orange Bulbine, Lamb’s Ears Silver Carpet and Sweet Pea Shrub. You can view these plants, and 80 more, in our RightScape Demonstration Garden in front of IRWD’s office building at 15600 Sand Canyon Boulevard, Irvine. The garden is open 365 days a year from sunrise to sunset. 


When can I start watering again?


Whether El Nino comes on strong in March and April or fizzles out, we are still recovering from four straight years of drought with the possibility of a fifth year quite likely, making it very important to continue being water efficient. During this time of year, the days remain shorter and plant watering needs continue to be reduced, so regardless of the temperature and how much rainfall we've received, let's all keep using less water. In any event, you wait until late spring to start watering your landscape again. 


Can you recommend some low-water edibles besides rosemary and lavendar suitable for my central coastal OC location?


It's great to hear that you want to incorporate more drought friendly edibles into your landscape. Irvine's Mediterranean climate is ideal for growing a drought tolerant edible garden. Consider building up your soil with nutrient rich compost, grouping plants together by water and care needs, and mulching. Here is a list of water efficient, edible plants for your garden:

  • pomegranates
  • peppers
  • artichokes
  • eggplants
  • oregano
  • fennel
  • sage
  • sweet bay
  • thyme