Water for garden: Sustainable practices

by Jacqui Zuzgo 01/01/2023

One of the best ways to live more sustainably is by conserving water. For garden and yard care, however, this can sometimes be a challenge. It helps to know exactly when, where and how to water your garden with minimal waste - while still keeping your plants healthy and thriving.

If you’re interested in ways to conserve water in your gardening practices, try these tips:

Drought-tolerant plants

Plants that are “drought-tolerant” don’t require watering as frequently as other plants. While your first thought might be desert cacti or succulents, there is a wide variety of drought tolerant plants suitable for any sustainable garden.

Some popular flowering examples include geraniums, lavender and wild lilac. For edible plants, artichokes are your best choice for a low water garden.

All drought-tolerant plants are different, but tend to enjoy sandy soil with good drainage. These plants still help you save water even when the soil moisture is low, as they store water in their tubers, leaves and other structures.


Mulch is the term for a protective layer of organic material spread out over the soil in your garden. It typically contains wood chips, straw, fallen leaves, grass clippings and other garden waste.

Mulch plays an integral role in water conservation by helping control the level of moisture in the soil. With a layer of fresh mulch, the soil surface takes longer to dry out. This means your plants are happier longer between watering trips.

Collecting & recycling water

Rainwater collection systems are perfect for gardens in almost all climates, as they help you store and reuse water when you need it most. Rain barrels are a simple way to collect water from your home’s gutters without digging any trenches or laying pipes.

For more elaborate rain collecting, you can implement a “wet” collection system to route water underground. Either way, collecting and recycling waste water will lower your environmental impact and your water utility bills when gardening.

Low water gardens come in all types, from vegetable gardens to vibrant floral landscapes. As long as you keep these water conservation tips in mind, you’ll help the environment and care for your thirsty plants at the same time.

About the Author

Jacqui Zuzgo

I have been a REALTOR® in Massachusetts since 1984 and hold both a salesman and broker license. I am currently affiliated with Five College REALTORS® located at 190 University Drive, Amherst, MA. Over my career, I have consistently been a Top Producer in the Pioneer Valley and have gained a reputation for being a strong-minded, no-nonsense negotiator in the industry. I also frequently rank highly on Boston’s Top 20 for sales in Western Massachusetts. Some of my best qualities include my listening and communication skills. I have time and again proven to work well under pressure with exceptional attention to detail. My commitment to my clients and professionalism is obvious in every transaction.

Representing both buyers and sellers in Hampshire and Franklin Counties, as well as assisting in relocations throughout the United States and globally has helped me embrace the need for quality performance and develop an acute and sincere sensitivity to people's needs. Honing in on what matters most is almost a sixth sense. Communication and awareness of the situation at hand produce a final result that has undoubtedly led to the large referral business I maintain.

Education has been a theme throughout my 30 years of experience. Well versed in technology and holding key designations have proven to be assets to my performance and dedication to the Real Estate field. My never-ending enthusiasm, availability, knowledge and drive make for a seamless transaction every client, every time.

I am a native of the Pioneer Valley. I am committed to sharing all the area has to offer in making your transition, whether long distance or short, a satisfying experience.


  • University of Massachusetts, Amherst - Bachelor of Science 1983
  • Top Individual Seller for Residential Sales in the Pioneer Valley since 2006.
  • #1#1 Realtor in the entire Franklin/Hampshire Counties for Millions Sold since 1999.
  • Highest producer in sales since 2004 in Franklin/Hampshire Counties.
  • ABR®– Accredited Buyer's Representative
  • CRS – Certified Residential Specialist (only 3% of REALTORS® hold a CRS)
  • e-PRO – Digital Marketing, Certified e-PRO Realtor®
  • GRI – Graduate, Realtors® Institute
  • SRES– Seniors Real Estate Specialist®

Biographical Highlights:

Life long, active member of the community, born & raised in the Pioneer Valley. Graduate of University of Massachusetts, Amherst, BS 1983.

Current Committee Involvement:

Member of the local Chamber of Commerce - Post Board of Director's member Volunteer for the Road to Recovery.

Greenfield Community College Foundation Board Member 

Greenfield Savings Bank Corporator

MLS Professional Standards Committee Member

Have a question for Jacqui? Jacqui's email: [email protected]