The Wall Street Journal hides the garden hose for a piece on the xeriscaping (waterless gardening) trend. Interesting tidbit: employees of Denver's water department are believed to have coined the term back in the early 1980s. Who knew?

TreeHugger talks trash while discussing a "pay-as-you-throw" trash metering system instituted by the town of Sanford, Maine. The program has dramatically cut the amount of trash being sent to landfills (and upped the town's recycling rate by more than 150 percent). Here's hoping that folks in Sanford aren't hoarding garbage in their homes ...

The Contemporist tours the Venice House in Venice, California. This stunning Lewin Wertheimer-designed home features radiant floor heating, a solar heated pool, and drought-tolerant landscaping. I'm pretty much sold. 

The Los Angeles Times relays news that a new lawn-watering ordinance will allow Los Angelenos to water their lawns three days a week instead of two, as long as it's done before 9 am or after 4 pm. 

Dwell admires a ramshackle carriage house converted into a cozy living space that incorporates numerous salvaged/repurposed elements. Says architect Christi Azevedo: "With the added help of my electrician brother, Craig—and many beers and Saturdays—we tricked this former pigeon roost into a modern loft."

Grist straps on a pair of cowboy boots and heads to El Paso, Texas, a town with a much-copied "comprehensive approach to water conservation."

EcoHome Magazine reports that "although the market for certified green homes is growing, a new national poll has found that consumer interest in owning a sustainable or energy-efficient home has declined." Hmph. 

USA TODAY declares lush green lawns that require massive amounts of water and chemical pesticides to be "out of fashion." Can I hear an amen? 

Jetson Green takes a gander at The Belmont, the first apartment complex in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area to receive LEED Silver certification. This is cool: new tenants are given a green cleaning product kit upon moving into the 464 unit community.

The New York Times announces that Nightwood, an eco-friendly home furnishings store, has opened in Brooklyn. Says co-owner Nadia Yaron: "We’re making furniture for people like us, who want something original, local and made of environmentally friendly materials."

Image: Aka Hige

Matt Hickman ( @mattyhick ) writes about design, architecture and the intersection between the natural world and the built environment.

Playing catch up: Dryer homes and gardens
It's high time to give that sprinkler a rest ... the dominating topic in this week's edition of 'Playing catch up' is water-sensitive gardening.