WaterSmart SC Plant Rebate
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WaterSmart SC Plant Rebate
The City's Water Conservation Program has a limited-time incentive program that will provide you with up to $300 towards WaterSmart plants to replace areas where you currently have grass.

Most grasses need enormous amounts of water & fertilizer to stay green. The runoff then pollutes our ocean. Reduce your lawn's size by eliminating the areas you don't need - like next to the driveway!

See the program guidelines & eligibility details below or email us with questions.

More information on WaterSmart SC Plant Rebate

WaterSmart SC Plant Rebate - Guidelines
Download a WaterSmart Plant Rebate program flyer which covers the program guidelines & pre-approval process in detail here. To highlight:

  • This rebate program is exclusive to San Clemente Water Utility customers.
  • This rebate program is for single-family and multi-family residences with established traditional turf in their yards.
  • Program participants must be pre-approved to participate in the rebate program before purchasing plants and before a rebate of up to $300 can be issued.
  • Customers must replace at least 250 square feet of grass and replace it with eligible WaterSmart plants.
  • Program participants must make their purchases from a WaterSmart Plant List. Local nureries participating in the program can provide information on varieties, hybrids, etc. that may qualify for the rebate as well. More info on the WaterSmart plant list can be found below.
  • Rebates will be given on a first-come, first-served basis.

  • WaterSmart SC Eligible Plant List
    More than 60 eligible WaterSmart groundcovers, flowers, shrubs, and trees are included in this program for you to design around! Click the link below for the plant list which has pictures and details of each plant:
  • WaterSmart SC Plant Rebate List

  • On the left is a Douglas Iris, WaterSmart plant #16 off the eligible plant list. Below is a Matilija Poppy (Romneya coulteri 'White Cloud'), #52 on the list. The Matilija Poppy has the largest flower of any plant native to California and is known by its "fried egg" flower!

    Once you've been pre-approved, the list of participating nurseries which carry these plants will be provided to you.

    Pre-Approval & Post-Installation Process
  • Customers must be pre-approved to partiicipate in the rebate program. If you're interested, email the water conservation staff or call the City's Utility Division at (949) 366-1553.
  • The city must inspect the proposed area of grass removal before the existing grass is removed and before plant purchases are made. A site survey will need to be scheduled.


  • The City must inspect the plants after they are installed in order for participants to be eligible to receive a rebate of up to $300.
  • Participants must provide the City with puchase receipts, statements or invoices as well as empty plant containers in order to verfity the purchase and installation of plants.

  • How to Kill Your Lawn!
    In order to install your WaterSmart landscape, you will first need to successfully kill your lawn - from death comes life! Killing the grass is the most important step as the entire lawn area that you convert must fully be removed, including the roots. Any roots left behind will cause you grief down the line with tiresome weeding, particularly if you have warm season grasses (e.g. Bermuda grass). Click here for a guide on grass types.

    There are specific steps you will want to take to make sure your lawn is dead:

  • Tree of Life Nursery has a great handout detailing how to kill your lawn: click here
  • The Long Beach Water Dept. also provide steps: click here
  • The UC Guide to Healthy Lawns also provides steps on how to kill lawns as well as how to responsibly handle herbicides (like Glyphosphates that kill grass, as used in "RoundUp"): click here

  • WaterSmart Landscapes in San Clemente - Virtual Tour
    Explore existing WaterSmart landscapes here in San Clemente!  Click on the Green Trees in the map below for a virtual tour.  Use the tools in the upper left to zoom in and play with the buttons on top right to view an aerial map of SC! 

    Once inspired, hop on your bike or slip on your roller skates and go look at these WaterSmart landscapes in person!

    View WaterSmart San Clemente Gardens & Landscapes in a larger map

    WaterSmart SC Plant Rebate - Apply!
    To begin the PRE-APPROVAL process email the water conservation staff by clicking this link or call (949) 366-1553.

    City of San Clemente
    City Hall | 100 Avenida Presidio, San Clemente, CA 92672 | Phone (949) 361-8200  |  FAX (949) 361-8285
    Community Development | 910 Calle Negocio, Suite 100, San Clemente, CA, 92673 | Phone (949) 361-6100  |  FAX (949) 361-8281
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