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University Communications - 5244 North Jackson Ave. Fresno, CA 93740-8027 - 559.278.8595

May 15, 2009


Water-Wise Plant Exchange is May 16

With Water Awareness Month in drought-stricken California under way, the city of Fresno and California State University, Fresno are partnering Saturday, May 16, for the inaugural free, public Water-Wise Plant Exchange at the university’s Horticulture Nursery.

From 8 a.m. to noon, advice will be provided on nurturing beautiful yards and gardens that can thrive with minimal water and there will be an opportunity for area residents to swap water-saving plants. The Horticulture Nursery is at 3150 E. Barstow Ave., just east of Chestnut Avenue.

Gardeners are encouraged to donate cuttings, bulbs and seeds to help others establish water-wise landscaping. Master gardeners and other experts will offer advice at no charge.

A limited supply of free, water-sipping potted plants will be available and student-grown water-wise plants can be purchased from the nursery during and after the event.

Sponsors are the city’s Water Conservation Program, the Fresno State Horticulture Program and the International Center for Water Technology, which is headquartered on campus.

The need to increase awareness of water-wise urban landscapes is accelerating as Fresno residents get closer to mandatory metering of domestic water use, said Dr. John T. Bushoven, assistant professor of horticulture in Fresno State’s Department of Plant Science. The city has made drought-tolerant landscaping throughout Fresno a top sustainability priority.

“Getting the information now is critical, since it takes a year or so for such gardens to become established and be truly water wise,” Bushoven said. “In our current regional drought conditions, using water-wise plants in our urban landscape has become even more crucial.”

A list of drought-tolerant plants that are desirable for landscaping will be available at the event or by calling the city at 559.621.5480.

Bushoven says nearly 75 percent of the plants on the list are available at the Gibson Farm Market or from the Horticulture Nursery.

Participating agencies are the Central Valley Water Awareness Committee, Fresno County Women’s Chamber of Commerce, the University of California Cooperative Extension’s Master Gardener Program, California Native Plant Association, Clovis Botanical Garden, Tree Fresno and Water-wise Landscape Design.

For more information call 559.278.2861 or 559.278.2952.