Use Green Landscaping Practices to Save Money and Resources

The following is an excerpt from NYC Foodscape‘s recent article for a national affordable housing publication, Assisted Housing Management Insider, about using environmentally sustainable practices to create aesthetically pleasing and healthy landscapes for existing residents to enjoy and to enhance the curb appeal essential to attracting eligible new residents. The Insider is a plain English “how-to” publication, giving advice to owners and managers of low-income/federally-subsidized and public housing (Section 8 project-based, Section 202, Section 236, Tax Credit, NYCHA/PHA, HOPE 6 and other federally regulated sites) on complying with complicated housing regulations and managing their properties effectively. 

Creating positive curb appeal is essential to attracting and keeping members in your community. But landscaping for curb appeal no longer means wide-open lawns and box yews with a few annuals. On average, the cost of turf maintenance is 40 cents per square foot compared with 20 cents per square foot for other plants, shrubs, and ornamentals. Lawn and traditional landscape irrigation wastes up to 1.5 billion gallons of water every day and accounts for 40 percent to 60 percent of urban water use, according to ET Water Systems, a producer of irrigation control systems. Many traditional landscapes that use invasive species and pesticides and don’t take into account natural habitats can all negatively impact the environment.

Many sites want to redesign their outdated landscapes into sustainable landscapes for the numerous benefits they offer. In addition to lowering costs by minimizing water usage, as well as chemical pesticides and fertilizers, sustainable landscapes require less maintenance, reduce groundwater and air pollution, and improve the physical appearance of the site.

What Is Sustainable or ‘Green’ Landscaping?
Sustainable landscapes need not be hot, dry gardens of cactus and gravel. They can include beautiful flowers and other plants, shrubs, and trees that reduce maintenance costs while protecting the environment. Using environmentally sustainable practices will still create aesthetically pleasing and healthy landscapes for existing residents to enjoy and to enhance the curb appeal essential to attracting eligible new residents. And they can help increase property values based on the water and other cost savings.

To read full article: Use Green Landscaping Practices to Save Money and Resources

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