October 5, 2022

Intense heat drying out business for landscape industry

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AUSTIN (KXAN) — It’s a good bet that most, if not all of Central Texas, wants some rain in the forecast as soon as possible. But that’s especially true for those in the landscape and lawn care industry like Chilee Navarro.

Navarro and her husband have owned Good Neighbor Lawn and Landscape in Austin for 15 years. She said this summer, fewer calls are coming in because of water restrictions across the region.

“We used to get about 20 calls a day and we’re at about five to six calls a day right now,” Navarro said.

For the projects they do have, Navarro said clients want out with the grass and in with the rocks.

“For the next two weeks, we have nothing but rock, cactus, agave, all of that,” Navarro said.

Jorge Tovar, owner of Picture Perfect Lawns, is in a similar position.

“Every summer gets dry, but not as bad as this one. This one’s taking a toll,” Tovar said.

He said a majority of his clients are also in the market for xeriscaping, a type of landscaping that reduces or completely removes the need for watering.

Image of a front yard in Georgetown with xeriscaping.
Both Tovar and Navarro said xeriscaping is a technique mostly used in dessert climates like in Arizona and Nevada.

“These plants right here will basically survive on their own with very very low water to almost zero water,” Tovar said.

Both Navarro and Tovar said they don’t expect business to pick up anytime soon. So for now, they’ll wait it out until they get the one thing they so desperately need.

“We need rain!” Navarro said.

Starting tomorrow, another city in Central Texas will be under water restrictions.

The City of Buda will enter Stage 1 drought conservation measures. The city said it aims to reduce 10% of its total water use.



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