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Inspiration Garden

Sacramento County recently celebrated the grand opening of the new River-Friendly Inspiration Garden. Originally a water conservation demonstration garden, it has been renovated to showcase River-Friendly Landscaping practices.

The garden is located in the Laguna Creek Watershed next to the Sacramento County Water Agency's Water Treatment Plant on Waterman Road between Rendham Way and Westray Drive, about 0.4 mile north of Calvine.

The garden is open 7am–7pm daily.

The Garden showcases River-Friendly Landscaping practices that conserve water, reduce yard waste, prevent pollution of our air and local rivers, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. It features beautiful water-efficient plants and native grasses that need less water and mowing than traditional landscapes. Download this informative brochure to learn more the garden and its plants.

Grand Opening

Here are some photos from the grand opening of the River-Friendly Inspiration Garden, held on June 6, 2013:

An interpretative sign welcomes visitors to the garden and introduces the Seven Principles of River-Friendly Landscaping.
The Inspiration Garden includes a shaded pavilion. Here, people gather before the opening ceremony.
Sacramento County District 2 Supervisor Jimmie Yee speaks to those gathered.

Here we see two features of the Garden:

• a pervious path that allows water to soak into the ground rather
   than running off, and
• two plots of Red fescue 'Molate', a less thirsty turf alternative.

On the Conserve Water sign you can learn about many ways to conserve water in your landscape.

Come check out the plants in the Inspiration Garden!

These drought-tolerant plants could be just right for your yard!
This brochure will help you identify the plants.

Western redbud (foreground) is a deciduous California native tree/shrub that can grow up to 20 feet tall. Right behind it are several Verbena bonariensis that can get to be 6 feet tall.
Right foreground: Daylilies
Middleground: Bentgrass (lawn alternative)

Background: Spurge

Right foreground: Manzanita (a California native)
Middleground: Kniphofia (Red hot poker)
This sedum 'Autumn Joy' is a popular landscape plant.

More about the Garden

The River-Friendly Inspiration Garden is dedicated in honor of two inspirational women in our community: Donna Dean and Judy Waegell. Judy’s family owns agricultural land in the headwaters of the Laguna Creek Watershed and she is remembered for her devotion to resource conservation, sustainable development, community service and family, as well as her passion for music and gardening. Donna was a civil engineer with Sacramento County whose pioneering vision for community water conservation is exemplified in this garden.

This garden is owned and operated by the Sacramento County Water Agency. It was renovated in 2013 by the Sacramento County Department of Water Resources with funding provided by a grant from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Stewardship Opportunity

There are many opportunities for schools, youth groups, and local organizations to help tend this garden or gain community service hours. Please contact Jeanette Huddleston at 874-4711 or for more information on how to become a steward.

Is your landscape River-Friendly?
Use our benefits calculator to find out.

Here are some more in depth articles on specific RFL topics that you might find of interest:

Contest Winner

RFL Inspiration Garden

RFL Examples

Rain Gardens

Mulch, Grasscycling, and Compost

Get Mulching

Fertilize Naturally — Is Feeding Frenzy Really Needed?

Plant Trees, Save Energy!

Right Plant, Right Place!

Plant Selection

Plant Communities

Take Action to Save Water Outdoors…

Lawn Care: How Green is Your Grass?

Rethink Your Lawn

Pests Bugging You?

River-Friendly Pest Control

Managing Common Pests

Good Bugs

Interview about RFL (MP3)

Choose California natives first

Don't Blow It!

Reducing Outdoor Asthma Triggers


Watch the YouTube video
"Slow the Flow - Make Your Landscape Act Like a Sponge"
to learn about the importance of landscaping to stormwater quality.

The Seven Principles of
River-Friendly Landscaping

Click on any section to learn more