Flip Your Strip

By Shaun Moser

Park strips are one of the hardest areas of our yards to keep looking good. They’re hot, narrow, and hard to water. When lawn is used in a park strip it is difficult to keep green and looking good. With overhead spray, we often end up watering the sidewalk and street more than the park strip! Rather than fight a losing battle, “Flip Your Strip” into something more manageable and water thrifty

This transition is easier than you might think. You can convert your existing spray heads to drip irrigation with a conversion kit that is available at most irrigation supply stores. The kit should be installed on at least two of your existing spray heads. The rest of the spray heads can be capped or removed. Not only does flipping your strip conserve water, it also increases the curb appeal of your home!

Here are some of our favorite park strip plants:

  • Achillea x ‘Moonshine’  Moonshine Yarrow This perennial is a very easy to grow and maintain. It holds its beautiful yellow flower clusters even in the hottest conditions. It flowers from late spring well into the summer.
  • Nepeta x faassenii ‘Walkers Low’ – Walker’s Low Catmint Catmint is a plant that thrives in a waterwise garden. It has periwinkle blue flower spikes that begin to bloom late spring and if deadheaded will repeat bloom several times. It excels in park strips because its dense mass of foliage helps keep out weeds.
  • Penstemon eatonii Firecracker Penstemon There are more Penstemons native to Utah than any other place in the world. They love the dry heat, and Firecracker Penstemon is no exception. It adds excellent spring color to a park strip with its tall spikes of red flowers.
  • Penstemon barbatus ‘Rondo’  Rondo Penstemon This is a multi-colored selection of Penstemon. It has red, pink, and purple colored tubular flowers with glossy green foliage. It blooms in the late spring and early summer.
  • Schizachyrium scoparium  Little Bluestem This is a short, clumping ornamental grass with blue-green foliage. It stands just 2-3 feet tall so it is a perfect size for a park strip. What really makes this plant stand out is the amazing flaming orange color that it turns in the fall.
  • Tetraneuris acaulis  Sundancer Daisy This little plant is a super bloomer. It forms tight mounds of small grass like foliage with numerous yellow, daisy-like flowers dancing above. It can at times be seen blooming in February in the hotter locations of a landscape and continues to bloom well into the fall.
  • Berlandiera lyrata  Chocolate Flower Chocolate Flower smells just like the name says it does and showcases little yellow flowers. It’s something you have to experience to believe.

In addition to the favorites above, we’ve created a number of FREE downloadable designs that you can use for your park strip flip, available at flipyourstrip.com. Then come see some of the plants in an actual park strip at the Conservation Garden Park in West Jordan.