How Adopting Florida-Friendly Landscaping Practices Saves Money



UF/IFAS Florida Friendly™ Landscaping (FFL) helps homeowners find more sustainable alternatives for their landscapes. The changes reduce overall water use and pollutants that can enter Florida’s waterways, but a bonus effect is long-term cost savings.

“A Florida-friendly landscape can be designed to look the way you want it to, fit your community aesthetic and lifestyle while being environmentally sustainable,” said FFL Program Director Esen Momol. . “If you don’t know where to start, ask your UF/IFAS Extension Office and Florida Master Gardener Volunteers is always a free and easy phone call or visit.

Familiarize yourself with the 9 Principles of Florida-Friendly Landscaping™ at be inspired by achievements on the program website. Find more information on the advantages of FFL on Ask.IFAS.ufl.eduincluding posts like “Twenty-two ideas for a low-care, low-cost landscape” and “Estimating the Water Saving Potential of Florida-Friendly Landscaping Activities.”

Below, FFL program managers share some cost-cutting strategies for the home landscape.

Plant selection and installation

  • Plant dwarf plants that require less pruning.
  • Choose plants that have few pest problems, which saves on pesticides.
  • Use perennials instead of annuals so you don’t have to replant as often.
  • Use drought-tolerant plants that require less water once established.
  • Purchasing smaller plants for installation reduces the initial investment. Give them space and time to grow.
  • Planting the right trees near the east and west sides of your home will shade the house and reduce your air conditioning bill in the summer.


  • Calibrate your irrigation system.
  • Adjust your watering clock according to the seasons.
  • Use smart irrigation controllers and components.
  • Install and maintain your rainstop.
  • Check the irrigation system for broken or misaligned heads.

Other good management practices

  • Use pine leaves and straw from your property as mulch.
  • Practice integrated pest management to reduce the number of pesticides applied.
  • Leave grass clippings on the lawn.

The mission of the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) is to develop relevant knowledge of agricultural, human, and natural resources and to make that knowledge available to maintain and improve the quality of human life. With more than a dozen research facilities, 67 county extension offices, and award-winning students and faculty at the UF College of Agricultural and Life Sciences, UF/IFAS brings science-based solutions to the agricultural and natural resource industries. of the State and to all residents of Florida. .


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