Waterwise Recognition Program

The City of Brantford, the Brantford Master Gardeners, and the Brantford Garden Club recognize the efforts of residents who have converted a portion of their property to be waterwise.

Waterwise properties have the following features:

  • More plants than grass.
  • Property requires little to no watering.
  • Most plants appear to be native or drought-tolerant species.
  • Installed rain barrels.
  • The use of proper mulching techniques.

Do you know of a garden with these features? If so, it might eligible for waterwise recognition!

Application and recognition

Apply for Waterwise Landscape Recognition. You need to submit the form with before-and-after pictures by August 22.

Recognized residents will receive the following:

  • A garden plaque.
  • Acknowledgement in the Brantford Expositor and on the City of Brantford website.
  • Entry into a draw for a chance to win prizes valued at up to $250.


To be eligible:

  • Not more than 25% of your greenspace can be lawn.
  • Backyards may be considered in the overall waterwise landscaping if the front yard is also waterwise.
  • The waterwise portion of the landscaping should be at least 3 years old.

Properties nominated for recognition will be pre-screened for eligibility. Property owners will be contacted to arrange for an appointment time in early September. Owners with only a front yard do not require appointments.

The viability of newly landscaped properties will be at the judges' discretion.

Evaluation criteria

We evaluate gardens based on three different aspects.

Water conservation (50%)

  • Use of native or low water demand plants.
  • Use of mulches or soil improvements to retain moisture.
  • Efficient forms of irrigation used on all planted areas of property.
  • Incorporation of rainwater harvesting or grey water re-use.

Waterwise design (30%)

  • Visual appeal.
  • Layout displays a good balance between hardscapes (e.g., stone paths, wooden decks) and plants.
  • Sensitivity to site is shown through the use of shady areas.
  • Non-vegetative materials are porous (e.g., rocks, pots, etc., are water absorbent).
  • Biodiversity is visible in landscape with a variety of species.

General quality and health (20%)

  • Landscape has weeds under control.
  • Plants are healthy (not choked by invasive plants or diseases, and are pest-free).
  • Best maintenance practices are used. This includes no use of chemical pesticides and no leaking water fixtures.

An overall score of 75% must be met for a garden to receive recognition.