Desert Landscaping

Desert Landscaping: What It Is, Who Does It and Why


Desert landscaping can be defined as a method of designing a landscape that incorporates elements that are naturally found in deserts and can survive well in arid conditions.

Desert landscaping ideas have gained popularity over the past years due to an increase in the scarcity of water in some areas of the country.

It can be defined as a process of using a mixture of ground coverings such as crushed stone, artificial turf of pavers, and desert plants that can survive in low water conditions and appealingly arranging them.

The most remarkable feature of these desert landscapes is that after their construction they do not require much maintenance.

By desert landscaping, you can create a great environment by simply using plants, rock formations, and pebbles.

What Are the Elements Used in Desert Landscaping?

The major elements of desert landscaping include plants that can survive well in low moisture conditions. These plants produce maximum beauty when they are used in a desert landscape.

Desert soil has a high alkaline content, so it does not support regular green plants which you plant in your lawn.

They require an excessive number of fertilizers if they want to survive in desert conditions. Make sure that chose the correct plants for the desert landscape that can thrive in such conditions.



Hardscapes are different elements that can significantly enhance the beauty of your desert garden. The hardscape includes walkways, retaining walls, fire pits, artificial small waterfalls, and lovely rock formations.

You can create your wonderland by installing these elements in your garden with a help of a professional. Hardscapes include everything which doesn’t have a life. Starting from a simple pebble to a grand pergola, all are a part of a hardscape.

Different elements can be used to construct a hardscape such as wood, metal, natural stone, and even concrete. They reduce the planting area and are very ornamental. You can also use simple pumps that loop the same water, in this way you can have a trickle of running water even in your desert landscape.

These small waterfalls and fountains can be a marvelous addition to your landscape as they not only add beauty but also use a minimum amount of water.


While creating a desert landscape you should always choose drought-tolerant desert plants, structural interest, and bright foliage color.

You can add visual interest to your garden by choosing plants of different shapes, textures, and heights. If you are choosing a plant that produces flowers in some season, then you should choose a variety of plants that blooms at different times.

This will make your garden evergreen and filled with colors. While you choose plants for your desert landscape, make sure that your select evergreen plants as deciduous plants shed leaves during the autumn season and create a mess.

Container Options

Container Options

Another stunning object that you can use to enhance the beauty of your desert garden is containers of different sizes and textures. Large ceramic pots in natural tones always add charm to a desert garden.

You can also choose metal containers if you want to give your garden a rustic look. It depends on the size of your garden that how many pots and containers should be placed. Make sure you use a loamy mixture of soil and there is also proper drainage in the pot.

A Smart Environment-Friendly Method 

A Smart Environment-Friendly Method

By now, it must be clear that desert landscaping can truly transform a house that has a sizeable backyard or front yard. You can always make your yard inviting and attractive without wasting water.

Nicole Scott
Nicole Scott, a graduate of Arizona State University, has dedicated over 15 years to mastering the art of desert landscaping. She joined our editorial team in 2021, bringing a deep understanding of arid climate gardening and sustainable practices. Nicole’s previous experience includes working with leading landscape architects in the Southwest. She advocates native plant preservation and enjoys painting desert landscapes in her free time.

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