IRWD Demo garden

IRWD Demonstration Gardens

Irvine Ranch Water District has three demonstration gardens that you can visit for free from dawn until dusk any day of the year. Come on over and get inspired!

Drought-Tolerant, California Native, and Fire-Resistant

The original demonstration garden (pictured at right) is growing outside of IRWD's administrative offices at 15600 Sand Canyon Avenue in Irvine. It is a vivid example of how you can turn your lawn into a water-efficient landscape using drought-tolerant, California-native and fire-resistant plants. Many plants are labeled with descriptions and QR codes that you can scan with your phone to get more information. Free guide books with more information on the garden and its plants are available at the garden's entrance.

Succulents

IRWD’s new succulent demonstration garden —  also at 15600 Sand Canyon Avenue in Irvine — was planted in May 2019. Succulents are diverse, beautiful, and nearly indestructible plants that thrive in dry climates. Their geometric shapes, effortless propagation and drought tolerance make them resilient choices for local gardeners eager to save water — and reduce their water bill.

San Joaquin Marsh

Take a trip to the San Joaquin Marsh and Wildlife Sanctuary—a hidden gem in Irvine. The RightScape demonstration garden surrounding the Visitors Center has more than three dozen plant varieties, each identified with a plant marker and QR code for mobile access to plant-care details. California-native and non-native drought-tolerant plants are featured in two distinct sections of the landscape.

Interpretive signs show how they differ in their growing characteristics and water needs. Additional signs illustrate how efficient irrigation technology and scheduling keep the garden looking healthy. A stormwater bioswale, consisting of river rocks and stones, runs prominently through the demo garden — to collect rain or irrigation water, helping it seep into the ground instead of running off-site. The San Joaquin Marsh Visitors Center is at 5 Riparian View in Irvine.