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2004 WaterSmart Landscape Challenge Winner Announced


Date: April 8, 2004
Contact: Beth Davis, JCSA Environmental Education Coordinator

Phone: (757) 253-6859



(James City County) Let's be Water Smart is pleased to announce the winner of its Water Smart Landscape Challenge: Carter and Michele LeBlanc-Piche` of Neal's Grant. The LeBlanc-Piche`'s answered the following contest question of "How have you applied Water Smart principles in your home or garden?" by describing innovative water conservation techniques such as placing an herb garden at the downspout of a rain gutter, attaching a PVC pipe to the air conditioning unit as a means to water their gardens, using hardwood mulch around trees, and maintaining their grass at a height of two to three inches to eliminate the need for constant watering in order to conserve water while producing a beautiful home landscape. "We have always been environmentally conscious and have utilized Water Smart principles when making our landscaping decisions and in choosing our plants, trees and shrubs," described Michele LeBlanc-Piche`. Unfortunately, the damaging effects of Hurricane Isabel in September of 2003 completely destroyed their water smart landscaping efforts.


The LeBlanc-Piche`'s will receive a free Water Smart landscape from the area's premiere design, landscape, nursery, and irrigation companies that are partners in the Water Smart program. The participating firms include: Basnight Land & Lawn; Belden Landscapes; Cooke's Gardens; Heart's Ease Landscape & Garden Design; Henderson, Inc.; Precipitation Unlimited, Inc.; Smith Turf & Irrigation; ServiceMASTER LawnCare of Williamsburg; Virginia Cooperative Extension & JCC/W Master Gardeners Association; and Waltrip Recycling. The companies who have joined as "partners" recognize the benefits to using Water Smart principals when establishing landscapes. The landscape makeover will also appear on television in a program to be aired on James City County Channel 48 and Cox Cable Channel 74.


"Not only will the LeBlanc-Piche`'s receive a great new landscape makeover, the television program will also serve as an educational tool demonstrating how to create a beautiful Water Smart landscape," stated Beth Davis, JCSA Environmental Education Coordinator. The Water Smart Landscape Challenge is part of the James City Service Authority's Let's Be Water Smart water conservation education program and was open to all James City County single-family dwelling homeowners. Contestants wrote essays describing their use of Water Smart principles in their homes and gardens and provided photographs of an approximate 1,000 sq. ft. space in their front or backyard with a short description of what the photographed area looked like. Thank you to all who entered.


"Let's be Water Smart" is a public/private water management initiative of the James City Service Authority. The goal of "Let's be Water Smart" is to promote responsible water usage in James City County. For more information about the Let's be Water Smart program, visit or contact Beth Davis, Environmental Education Coordinator, at (757) 253-6859.


Carter and Michele LeBlanc-Piche` residence in Neal's Grant overlooking described water smart landscape. LeBlanc1
Front yard of residence receiving landscape makeover. LeBlanc2
Front area of residence severely damaged by Hurricane Isabel receiving landscape makeover. LeBlanc3


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