The Water-Saving Garden

New in 2016!

The Water-Saving Garden: How to Grow a Gorgeous Garden with a Lot Less Water

With climate change, water rationing, and drought on the rise, conserving water is more important than ever — but that doesn’t mean that your gardening options are limited to cacti and rocks. The Water-Saving Garden provides gardeners and homeowners with a diverse array of techniques and plentiful inspiration for creating outdoor spaces that are so beautiful and inviting it’s hard to believe they are water-thrifty. Including a directory of 100 plants appropriate for a variety of drought-prone regions of the country, this accessible, contemporary guide is full of must-know information on popular gardening topics like native and drought-tolerant plants, rainwater harvesting, greywater systems, permeable paving, and more.


“A book full of inspiring designs and techniques to help you create an outdoor space that looks fabulous without costing the earth.”
Gardens Illustrated, September 2016

“Do you long to escape nonstop watering? The Water-Saving Garden, by Austin garden designer Pam Penick, will set you free. She teaches how to create beautiful, low-water gardens through smart plant choices, rainwater harvesting, and more.”
–Steve Bender, Southern Living, July 2016

“Water is a precious and endangered resource that needs to be conserved–even in climates that have ample rain….Pam Penick is an award-winning writer and a landscape designer whose artistic approach makes this book stand out.”
–Ken Druse, Country Gardens, Summer 2016

“Gardener’s Bookshelf: [One of] our favorite new garden titles.”
Better Homes and Gardens, May 2016

“[P]acked with practical ideas on how to make your garden a water saver, not a water guzzler.”
Dallas Morning News, April 14, 2016

The Water-Saving Garden is a well-designed and skillfully thought-out book — definitely worth the price of admission….A particularly winning section is devoted to ‘creating the illusion of water in the garden.'”
Texas Gardener‘s Seeds newsletter, April 6, 2016

“Water conservation is a major concern for many gardeners in the arid Western United States. Even if you live in a wetter climate, you can still lower your water bill by practicing water-wise gardening. In The Water Saving Garden, landscape designer Pam Penick explains how to keep your flora green with less water. Penick…reassures her readers that limiting water use doesn’t mean your yard need turn to desert. All it takes is her clever prescription of drought tolerant native plants, permeable surfaces, and rainwater or grey water systems.”
Sierra magazine, March/April 2016

“As a designer who focuses primarily on water-wise and lawn-free garden designs…The Water-Saving Garden…is hands-down one of my top three favorite resources. This book helps to inspire with gorgeous photos but also provides specific details about various methods of containing and re-using water. In fact, after only having it a few weeks now, I’ve already used this book several times to help with a few of my current projects.”
–Rebecca Sweet, The Designer, Spring 2016

“Penick…makes me want to raise a fist and holler, ‘Tell it, Sister!’…The Water-Saving Garden is a terrific resource for its numerous practical (and painless) ideas, plus photo after photo of great-looking gardens not blatantly (and painfully) waterwise.”
–Debra Lee Baldwin, Gardening Gone Wild, March 10, 2016

“What makes this book stand out is Penick’s designer’s eye. It is filled to the brim with wonderful color photographs of water-saving gardens in every imaginable style. Gardeners will find plenty of inspiration to transform their own gardens.”
Austin American-Statesman, February 26, 2016

“Powerful…engaging…imaginative…[The Water-Saving Garden] proves that conserving water does not mean giving up gardening.”
Publishers Weekly, November 2015


Advance Praise

“In an era of drought and unpredictable weather patterns, The Water-Saving Garden could not come at a better time. With striking photographs and a designer’s eye, Penick shows us just how gorgeous a water-wise garden can be. This is the must-have garden book of the year!”

— Amy Stewart, author of The Drunken Botanist and Wicked Plants


“In The Water-Saving Garden, Penick repositions water-conscious gardens as a central concern for all gardeners. Rich with inspiring examples and sage advice, this book boldly declares that water-wise gardens no longer need to be about sacrifice or compromise, but pleasure and abundance. An excellent resource for gardens of any climate.”

— Thomas Rainer, landscape architect and co-author of Planting in a Post-Wild World


“For those interested in both beautiful gardens and being good stewards of our precious water resources, The Water-Saving Garden is a timely must-read.”

— Jim Peterson, publisher of Garden Design


“Packed with design inspiration as well as practical advice, this timely book is a much-needed resource on creating and maintaining beautiful gardens with less water.”

— Susan Morrison, landscape designer and creator of the app Foolproof Plants for Small Gardens


“From eye-popping design—regardless of budget—to nitty-gritty DIY details, The Water-Saving Garden takes us down the creative path to gorgeous gardens that spare the water and pump up our style. Purpose, practicality, and passion: it’s all right here.”

— Linda Lehmusvirta, producer of PBS’s Central Texas Gardener


The Water-Saving Garden blends a passionate homage to water’s importance for all life with practical, detailed advice about using less of it in the garden. Illustrations show enticingly diverse gardens and water-wise alternatives to lawns.”

— Evelyn Hadden, author of Hellstrip Gardening and Beautiful No-Mow Yards


“We all need access to nature for our well-being. Pam Penick has written a useful guide for creating beautiful gardens where saving water naturally follows.”

— Steve Martino, landscape architect

The Thinker

“The frog does not drink up the pond in which he lives,” it’s said. Nor must we. I’m doing what I can and learning more every day, making small changes that add up to big water savings, and getting more out of the water I do use. I hope you’ll join me on the journey.

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