Learn about landscaping in Tucson and Southern Arizona

Learn about landscaping in Tucson and Southern Arizona with resources on a wide range of topics. Find and review landscape contractors in Tucson, AZ. Visit the web sites of professional landscaping organizations and associations to research native trees and desert-adapted plants. Study watering guidelines, and learn how to create and maintain a beautiful landscape that you can use and enjoy.

Tucson Landscaping Q & A

How long does it take for a plant to become established?

The term "established" refers to the point at which a newly planted tree, shrub, accent, or ground cover begins to produce new growth. New growth appears as fresh foliage or new stems. Typically, the root system of a shrub will be well established after one year. A tree will be well established after three years. New plantings need to be watered more frequently than established plants.

How much water do my plants need?

Depending on the size and type of the plant, you will need to water to different depths and widths. A large tree needs more water than a small groundcover, because it has a larger root zone-the area in which the plant's feeder roots are concentrated. Your plants will be healthiest if you completely wet the root zone each time you water.

How deep should I water my plants?

The 1-2-3 Rule is an easy way to remember how deep to water:
  1. Water small plants such as annuals to a depth of 1 foot.
  2. Water medium plants such as shrubs to a depth of 2 feet.
  3. Water large plants such as trees to a depth of 3 feet.
A good way to test how deep you have watered is to use a soil probe such as a sharpened piece of rebar or a very long screwdriver. About an hour after watering, push the probe into the soil. It will slide easily through wet soil but will be difficult or impossible to push through dry soil. Water your plants and lawn until you can easily slide the probe to the recommended depth.

How wide should I water my plants?

After plants are established, most water absorbing roots are located near the drip irrigation line which is beneath the outer edge of the plant's canopy, not close to the trunk or stem. Concentrate your emitters along the dripline of each plant. The water will spread down and horizontally as it soaks into the soil.

How much water should I give my lawn?

Grass or turf should be watered to a depth of 10 inches. Apply about .75" (¾ inch) of water each time you irrigate your lawn to wet the root zone.
Find Landscape Contractors in Tucson, AZ

Landscape contractors in Tucson, Arizona - SuperPages

Find Tucson landscape contractors on Superpages.com with customer reviews, photos and complete business information.

Best Landscapers in Tucson, Arizona - BuildZoom

Find the best landscapers in Tucson, Arizona based on the BuildZoom ranking system that analyzes license information, BBB ratings, consumer feedback and more.

Rate Landscape Contractors in Tucson, AZ - DexKnows

Compare ratings, read reviews, get directions and more for landscape contractors in Tucson, AZ on DexKnows.com

Find Tucson Landscaping Contractors - Contractors.com

Find landscaping contractors in Tucson, AZ; Compare ratings and get quotes from Tucson landscapers on Contractors.com.

BBB Accredited Landscape Contractors in Tucson, Arizona

BBB accredited landscape contractors in Tucson recommended and rated by the Better Business Bureau of Southern Arizona.
Watering Guidelines in Tucson, AZ
These watering guidelines are designed for landscapes in Tucson, AZ but should also work well for low desert regions of Southern Arizona. Plants need less water during cool or rainy weather. Additional water is needed for new plants or during unusually hot or dry weather. Water to the outer edge of the plant's canopy and to the depth indicated.
Landscape Watering Guidelines
Plant Type Native & high water use plants in Tucson, AZ Seasonal Frequency shows days between watering Depth how deeply
Spring Summer Fall Winter
Trees Native/desert adapted trees 14-30 days 7-21 days 14-30 days 30-60 days 24-36 inches
High water use trees 7-12 days 7-10 days 7-12 days 14-30 days 24-36 inches
Shrubs Native/desert adapted shrubs 14-30 days 7-21 days 14-30 days 30-45 days 18-24 inches
High water use shrubs 7-10 days 2-7 days 7-10 days 10-14 days 18-24 inches
Ground Covers Native/desert adapted plants 14-30 days 7-21 days 14-30 days 21-45 days 8-12 inches
High water use ground covers 7-10 days 2-5 days 7-10 days 10-14 days 8-12 inches
Cacti and Succulents 21-45 days 14-30 days 21-45 days only if needed 8-12 inches
Annuals 1-2­­­­­­­ days daily water 1-2 days 2-3 days 8-12 inches
Warm Season Grass 1-2 days daily water 1-2 days 15-30 days 6-10 inches
Cool Season Grass 2-7 days none 2-7 days 3-10 days 6-10 inches
These guidelines are for established plants in Tucson, AZ. Additional water is required for new plants and during unusually dry conditions.
The term "established" refers to the point at which a newly planted tree, shrub, accent, or ground cover begins to produce new growth. New growth appears as fresh foliage or new stems. Typically, a shrub will become well established after one year with a fully developed root system. Trees require up to three years to become fully established. New plantings need to be watered more frequently than established plants. The schedule below offers general watering guidelines to help new plants get established.
Watering Schedule for New Plants in Tucson, AZ
Weeks 1 - 2 Water new plants every 1-2 days in the summer and every 3-4 days fall - spring
Weeks 3 - 4 Water new plants every 3-4 days in the summer and every 6-7 days fall - spring
Weeks 5 - 6 Water new plants every 4-6 days in the summer and every 7-10 days fall - spring
Weeks 7 - 8 Water new plants every 7 days during the summer and every 10-14 days fall - spring
After 8 Weeks Gradually extend the time between irrigations until plants begin to produce new growth
Over half of household water goes into our landscapes in Tucson, AZ. Watering your plants efficiently is one of the best ways to save water. Proper watering will not only keep your landscape plants healthy but will also reduce your monthly water bill.
Resources for Landscapers in Tucson, Arizona

Nurseries in Tucson

Local directory of garden and plant nurseries in Tucson, AZ. View maps, addresses and phone numbers to each nursery.

SmartScape Program

SmartScape is a series of workshops designed to encourage smart landscaping practices in Tucson and Southern Arizona.

Tucson Botanical Gardens

Providing horticultural and ecological education and resources for gardeners & landscapers in Tucson and Southern Arizona.

Arizona Water - Use It Wisely

Tips, facts and resources for low-water-use landscaping, water conservation practices and irrigation methods for Arizona.

The Arizona Master Gardener Manual

A valuable resource for landscapers in Southern Arizona, this online manual provides detailed information about plants, trees, lawn care, fertilizers, pesticides, water quality and irrigation.