Native Landscaping Ideas for Colorado

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( — November 15, 2020) —  Landscaping in Colorado can be a challenge. The lack of water, rough terrain, exposure to high altitude, and sudden changes in the weather can all make it difficult to craft your ideal outdoor surroundings. Furthermore, it’s extremely important to maintain and nurture the natural environment in Colorado; however this can be difficult. The recent population increase, especially in the Denver and Boulder areas, has made it harder than ever for native plants and animals in Colorado to thrive due to natural habitats being disrupted. 

However, there are ways in which you can utilize Colorado’s native environment so that it works in your favor, allowing you to create a beautiful and unique space while preserving the delicate Colorado ecosystem. There are many benefits to using the natural plants, soils, and rocks available in Colorado which will result in a sustainable, relaxing, and gorgeous outdoor area. 

Use Natural Plants: 

When considering which plants to include in your Colorado landscaping plan, it is important to remember that native plants are much more likely to thrive, and there are many benefits to including them in your landscape design. They adapt well to the sometimes harsh conditions in Colorado, such as the variable climate and the lack of water. Low-water plants in particular work extremely well in Colorado. 

Using native plants in your landscaping also means that your display will require less maintenance, allowing you more time to simply enjoy your surroundings rather than constantly tending to them. Furthermore, natural plants are more resistant to the predators which are native to Colorado, including different pests and even some diseases. Try some of the following low-maintenance, natural plants in your area:

Include a Rock Garden: 

Rock gardens are another excellent way to take advantage of the natural terrain and conditions in Colorado. They are low-maintenance, beautiful, unique, and can be enjoyed all year round. There are many ways to create the perfect rock garden for your space. Consider the following ideas when crafting your garden:

  • Use rocks of varying size and shape.

  • Include some native plants in your display.

  • Carefully consider the positioning. Perhaps place your garden in one corner of your area in order to keep it precise and well-maintained.  

Incorporate a Fire Pit: 

Fire pits are a Colorado specialty. They can be constructed using natural rocks and soil and help with those chilly nights. Additionally, they can add beauty to your area with very little maintenance and can even be combined with other aspects of your landscaping plan, such as a rock garden or water feature. Keep the following things in mind when crafting your fire pit:

  • Be sure to maintain a safe distance from your home or anything flammable, especially in the dry Colorado climate.

  • Consider adding comfortable seating surrounding your fire pit so that everyone can enjoy it regularly.

  • Use natural stones in order to take advantage of Colorado’s native resources.

  • Try using wood over gas in order to help keep Colorado’s air clean. 

Consider Rock Streams and Waterfalls: 

Utilizing water in your landscaping plan is always a wonderful way to add a relaxing element to your display. However, in Colorado, water is often in short supply, and so it’s critical that you chose an intuitive and sustainable way to incorporate this feature. Rock streams and waterfalls are an excellent way to achieve the look you want without harming the natural water supply.

Additionally, you can actually use a stream or waterfall to benefit the Colorado water supply by having a self-sustaining cycle of water running through certain parts of your landscape. Furthermore, rocks streams and waterfalls are extremely aesthetically pleasing and thus can promote relaxation and even increase the retail value of your space. 

Build a Green Wall: 

A green wall is essentially any kind of structure that has plants which grow on it. Green walls are an excellent way to bring a truly unique look to your space while also taking advantage of native plants and foliage. There are many benefits to including a green wall in your landscaping venture. For example:

  • Green walls can serve as soundproofing fixtures to keep out unwanted noises. 

  • Green walls can help to filter the air near your residence, keeping unwanted toxins away.

  • Green walls can enhance the real estate value of your home or other space.

  • Green walls can serve as a natural nesting place for some bird species, helping to encourage the natural Colorado habitat.

Use Plains Grasses for Your Lawn: 

Remember that in Colorado, the lack of water can make maintaining a grass lawn a very challenging task. However, if you use grasses which are native to the area, you will be able to maintain a beautiful look all year round. Additionally, not only will plains grasses thrive in Colorado’s environment, but they will also save you money by needing much less water and overall maintenance than your typical grasses. Natural, low-maintenance grasses such as Blue Grama or Buffalograss are excellent options for your Colorado environment. 

Practice Edible Gardening: 

Try adding an edible garden to your area. This will aid in the beauty of your landscaping while also providing you with a sustainable food source. There are many plants which thrive well in Colorado conditions and can provide a delicious source of nutrition. Consider the following ideas when starting your edible garden:

  • Fruit trees such as cherry or plum

  • Vegetables such a lettuce or carrots

  • Herbs like basil and parsley


Regardless of whether you’re landscaping around your home, your place of business, or a more common area, taking the time to pay attention to and utilize the native resources Colorado has to offer is essential. Utilizing natural plants, rocks, and soils will save you both time and money and will help with the overall sustainability of the state. Furthermore, you will find yourself using less natural resources, such as water, which are in short supply in Colorado. 

For more information on landscaping in Colorado, please visit Lifescape Colorado online or reach out to us at 303.831.8310 or