Joshua Tree’s Water Wise Demonstration Garden – Did you know?

Winter rains can bring what desert residents call a “super-bloom” in spring. Bets are on that this might be one of those years. When visiting our Hi-desert, make it a date to visit the Joshua Tree Water Wise Demonstration Garden, where locals and all visitors are welcome to learn about water wise gardening. Studies has revealed that most residents spend up to 70% of their household water budgets on outdoor landscaping. This demonstration garden shows you how to cut back to just 40% of the same water use, simply via landscaping with plants that belong in arid regions (also known as Mediterranean climates).

This unique garden experience touts five different mini gardens—each depicting a different desert lifestyle. For example: The Native and Wildlife Garden is for those individuals who embrace the natural desert ecosystem. This garden has plants that encourage local wildlife to thrive within the native plantings, offering food, pollinators, habitat, and a nominal water source within this garden’s design.

From Our Partners

The Desert Ranch Garden appeals to residents with exceptionally large properties and who love outdoor entertaining and relaxation. Landscaping by design, is limited to the immediate property surrounds, complete with home edible gardening, while integrating it gradually to the natural desert flora. In contrast, the Mediterranean Garden is the complete opposite of the first two gardens: it shows you how you can enjoy non-native plants (also called water wise plants) that are found in other similar climate zones. This garden shows how some edible fruit trees and plants can thrive here, and yet use no more than 40% of a water budget.

The Thornless Garden is a parent’s dream and a pet-owner’s preference. While most visitors are convinced that all desert flora is hostile with sticks or pricks, this garden guides you to a “safe space” for play.

The fifth and remaining garden is called the Rock and Sloped Yard Garden—however, it is often nick-named the, “leave it and forget it” garden. This garden demonstrates how using low water use and native plants, along with rocks and boulders, not only sets a serene landscape scene to enjoy with minimal effort, but also, helps to mitigate soil erosion when our fierce monsoonal rains visit our desert in summer.

In addition to meandering through these inspirational gardens, educational static displays on rain harvesting, wildcrafting (the art of growing native plants from seeds), smart irrigation metering, the Desert Watershed mural, and more will greet you. Easy walking pathways make for a great family educational encounter (sorry, pets are not permitted inside the garden). The Joshua Tree Water Wise Demonstration Garden is located at 61750 Chollita Road, and is open to the public during business hours, Monday through Thursdays, 7:30 AM – 5PM (except holidays). It is always available seven days a week for a free tour by scheduling an appointment by calling Kathleen at (760) 218-2822, or by emailing:

From Our Partners