A landscaping ordinance designed to make the process of conserving water easier and cheaper for La Cañada Flintridge homeowners was approved Monday night by the City Council.

The ordinance, which only applies to new homes, regulates landscaping on large properties and is in compliance with state water conservation requirements, city officials said. It will go into effect next month.

Under the law, developers seeking to install a landscape area of at least 2,500 square feet and homeowners who have a landscape project of at least 5,000 square feet must present their plans to the city.

Landscape plans of less than 2,500 square feet do not require certification.

Applicants must complete a work sheet that includes information about the landscape plan and a water budget. Plants must be selected based upon their adaptability to the environment.

The ordinance ensures that homeowners are using water-efficient plants, said city planner Patrick Clarke.

The process has been conducted by the county in the past, but it will now be managed by the city. Applications will cost $150, but the new process will save property owners time and money, said Director of Community Development Robert Stanley.

“Things will go a lot quicker for homeowners who want to get their landscape plans approved,” he said.

Applicants must hire only certified landscape architects for their projects. The city will soon publish a list of qualified landscapers in the area on its website.

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