Wednesday, August 4, 2021

7 Steps to a Smart Yard

Curious about how you can create a beautiful lawn while still saving money on your water bill at the same time?

Texas SmartScapeTM  has developed an all-encompassing landscape program for those that live in North Texas. Here are seven steps you can follow to turn your lawn into a masterpiece!

Step 1: Come to the Southlake Texas SmartScapeTM Plant Sale!  Start your smart yard off right! The City of Southlake has partnered with our local Home Depot to bring you a family parking lot event on April 23rd, 2016 from 8am-12pm. Come sift through many varieties of Texas SmartScapeTM plants, check out informational displays, win prizes, and more!

Have a plan in mind.

Step 2: Plan and Design! Start with the end in mind. Consider your family’s needs and desires when envisioning your perfect yard, and then look critically at what you already have in your yard. What are the permanent fixtures or restrictions? What plants do you want to keep? Prioritize your  needs and create a plan. It may help to sketch out your ideas.


Using more soil and less turf can reduce the amount of water used.

Step 3: Less Turf, More Soil! Reducing the amount of turf in your lawn means more money in your pocket because you won’t have to water as much! Add more flower beds instead with SmartScapeTM plants. Try adding large, sweeping curves or pathways to the landscape to make it visually appealing. Adding organic matter is also a key to a solid foundation to help your plants thrive. Compost helps to condition the soil, hold moisture, prevent run-off, reduce erosion, and unlocks nutrients in the soil.

plant search

The Smartscape database offers helpful ideas of suitable North Texas plants.

Step 4: Planting! The SmartScape online plant database can help you find additional plants that are well-suited to the North Texas environment. Native plants are naturally drought-tolerant, as well as disease- and pest-resistant. This will reduce your irrigation, fertilizer, and pesticide requirements. When planning your yard or garden, use a wide range of plants and plant with room for their mature size. When planting or transplanting, remember to water the plant, water the hole, and water the plant in the hole.


Adding mulch helps reduce water evaporation.

  Step 5: Mulch! Regularly adding mulch to maintain about a 3-inch blanket is a good for beds and around trees. Mulch helps reduce evaporation  and cools soils in the summer by up to 10 degrees. It also helps reduce erosion, diseases, and prevents weeds from getting a foothold. Keep in mind  that when it comes to trunks or stems, instead of piling mulch up, you should instead lay it down as a in a shallow bowl shape around the trunk.


Make sure your irrigation system is running efficiently.

  Step 6: Be Water-Wise!  Efficient irrigation will save you a large amount money. The City of Southlake offers a free irrigation audit program,  known as W.I.S.E. guys, to the residents of Southlake. A licensed irrigator will come out to your property and inspect your irrigation system for  inefficiencies and broken parts. If you choose to get your system repaired, the City will provide you with a rebate of up to $200.


Regular maintenance is the key to a beautiful lawn.

Step 7: Maintenance!  Regularity and moderation should guide your maintenance schedule. Avoid excessive pruning as natural beauty softens the landscape. If you chose well-adapted plants for your location, maintenance should be minimal. If you do encounter problems, try cultural, organic, physical, and mechanical means of pest control.


Follow these seven steps to create a work of art in your yard!


Senior Center to host Smartscape Seminars at The Marq Southlake

The Southlake Senior Activity Center is proud to host two Smartscape Seminars, presented by Master Gardeners in partnership with the City of Southlake.

  • Intro to Smartscape: March 28 at 1:00 PM
    • Go beyond the basics of landscaping by learning design and care that are “Smart” for North Central Texas. Learn about the website,, which has a wonderfully deep search engine for native and adaptive plants of North Texas. Learn about Smartscaping and explore the website.
  • Sun vs. Shade Plant Selection: April 25 at 1:00 PM
    • Have a tree filling in and shading out the grass underneath? Learn how to determine the amount of sunlight in an area in the landscape and what plant selections are best for sunny areas.

For more information on the Smartscape Seminars or other events and activities at the Senior Activity Center, visit or call us at 817-748-8315.