Xeriscape Garden Stories

We have collected a series of xeriscape garden stories to inspire you. From smaller cottage gardens to larger landscapes, some of the gardens were created using landscape designers while others were completely DIY. Most include before and after photos so you can see the amazing transformations. Click the links to go to the individual garden story pages.

The Achenbach Garden

The Achenbach Garden, designed by Waterwise Landscape Design is a good example of xeriscape conversion. Starting out as a front yard of poor lawn and an unkempt water-thirsty cedar hedge, it was transformed into a xeriscape garden with the theme of “Japan meets Okanagan.”

This garden story shows the transformation of the garden through a gallery of before and after photos and outlines the steps taken in the xeriscaping process.

Go to Garden Story 

The Achenbach xeriscape garden in Kelowna BC

The Cook Garden

Donna Cook and her husband converted their front yard to xeriscape over a 3 year period. It had been a very large lawn on fast-draining sandy soil, adjacent to the road and surrounded by a circular driveway. This garden story includes before and after photos of the huge garden with meandering paths filled with a few small trees, and many varieties of drought-tolerant shrubs, perennials, ornamental grasses, and ground covers placed to provide changing interest in all four seasons. Go to Garden Story
The Cook xeriscape garden in Kelowna BC

The Goreski Garden

Wayne Goreski initially had plans to take out the lawn in his small front yard and “xeriscape” it by laying down landscape fabric, covering it with rocks and adding a few plants.

After attending an OXA “Introduction to Xeriscape” class, Wayne modified his approach and he sent a before, during, and after photo story of his project showing what he had learned.

Go to Garden Story

The Goreski garden in kelowna BC

Lisa’s Garden

Lisa wanted a low-maintenance, low-water front yard that would look attractive and fit with the cottage style of their house and white picket fence. To save on costs, they opted to do the work themselves. This garden story includes photos showing the steps taken to create this xeriscape cottage garden. Go to Garden Story
Lisa's xeriscape garden in Kelowna BC

The Maurer Garden

“Xeriscape” is a small component of our overall philosophy of cooperating with nature.

This is why architecture and landscaping were part of the same effort in this garden: no tree was cut, no rock was blasted, the contours of the land remained unaltered: house and garden flow with the land, they don’t force themselves upon it.

This story shows a unique xeriscape garden created in the centre of four small buildings.

Go to Garden Story

The Maurer xeriscape garden

Saskia’s Garden

The first summer Saskia Makela spent in the first home of her own, she resented the time spent watering her lawn. “I’d look across the street at Knox Mountain and it was beautiful. There were grasses and a variety of colour—and no one was watering over there,” she comments. “On our side of the street, it was all just green lawns,” she adds. This story details how Saskia transformed her garden as a total beginner with a low budget. Go to Garden Story
Saskia's xeriscape garden in Kelowna BC

The Youngberg Garden

When Jane and family bought their acreage in upper Ellison, the house was surrounded by a very large lawn bordered with well-established beds of hybrid roses and junipers. Through necessity and the desire to have a garden, Jane and family began to create a xeriscaped environment of native plants, aggressive re-seeders and spreading varieties – to fill up the spaces. This story details how the Youngbergs dealt with the challenges of creating an Okanagan drought-tolerant and deer-proof garden. Go to Garden Story
the Youngberg's xeriscape garden in Kelowna BC