"The last two years I think things have started to come back," says Chris Zanobini, President of the California Association of Nurseries and Garden Centers. "But there is a lot of concern given the water situation that we're facing right now."
Zanobini says warmer-than-usual winter weather has boosted sales for now...and nurseries are already seeing a shift in consumer demand to drought-tolerant ground cover and succulents.
"Definitely there are opportunities to promote California natives and drought resistant plants," says Zanobini. "But there is also information that we need to get out about how to just manage what you currently have and making sure your irrigation is effective."
One way to do that, Zanobini says, is to use mulch, which can reduce water evaporation by up to 40 percent.
Many nursery owners were hit hard in previous droughts and worry about a similar fate as water districts limit or ban outdoor watering.
Last year, California saw everything from intense drought to torrential rain. Researchers and water agencies say that the future of the state’s drought depends on adapting to these shifts.
As the drought dries up California’s wetlands, traveling birds such as ducks, geese and eagles are struggling to survive and breed. “This drought is bad. The odds are against us,” a state expert said.
Drought resilience depends on location but also extraordinary engineering — determining which California places are running out of water this year and which remain in good shape.
About 4,300 users were issued notices to halt diversions from the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta.
Experts say the current drought is hotter and drier than previous ones, meaning water is evaporating faster.
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