Attention all horticultural professionals and garden enthusiasts! The Department of Water Resources (DWR) has partnered with the UC Davis California Center for Urban Horticulture to update a free, online database that helps users find plants suitable for their region. With approximately 50 percent of urban water use going towards outdoor landscapes, this database will help residents adopt climate-ready landscapes that promote smart water use and help our natural pollinators thrive.
The Water Use Classification of Landscape Species database offers water use data for more than 3,500 plants and helps users find the perfect plants for their water needs. Using the Water Use Classification of Landscape Species database, users can search for plants by region, water requirement, and plant type. Thanks to funding from DWR, the database will receive updates later this fall when it is the perfect time to plant and will improve the user experience as California continues to embrace water conservation as a way of life.
“We’re excited to support an update to a great resource offered by UC Davis and the California Center for Urban Horticulture,” said Ryan Bailey, DWR Water Use Efficiency branch manager. “This update means the general public and our industry professionals will have the necessary information to make water-wise decisions that improve water conservation while planting a beautiful landscape.”
With California’s new climate reality involving frequent swings between extreme drought, flooding, and everything in between, smart water use – indoors and outdoors – continues to be important rain or shine. The Water Use Classification of Landscape Species database can help Californians make more informed decisions about their landscape and the types of plants they select based on local conditions.
“It has been almost 10 years since the last review and update to the Water Use Classification of Landscape Species database, database, and we are eager to begin the process of adding another 1,700 plant groups.” Said Dr. David Fujino, executive director for the California Center for Urban Horticulture. “We appreciate the support of the Department of Water Resources and the participation of the horticultural industry to provide this timely update.”
In addition to new plant entries, the updated database will include improved search functions allowing users to interact with maps to identify areas of interest, find results faster, create a “favorite” plant list, and download hi-resolution photos of low water use plants. The updated database is expected to launch in November 2024. Until then, users can use the existing Water Use Classification of Landscape Species database, information at https://ccuh.ucdavis.edu/wucols.