It’s not the desert soil itself that makes it so the plants require less water and/or fertilization, it’s the plants themselves. Desert soil is very sandy, which neither captures water nor nutrients very well. The plants that grow in that type of soil happen to not need very much water or nutrients to survive. If you want to keep the plants you have and need to water/fertilize very often, then silt and loam soils are the ones that absorb and keep nutrients and water the best. Another easy thing so you don’t have to fertilize very much is when leaves on your plants die and fall, let them sit there on the ground. They will decompose and return their nutrients to the soil for the living plants.
duckyduh is correct – you only have to water as much as your plants need water, which might depend in part upon the soil quality. Turning your soil into sand, however, is probably not the best way to go about it, because it will kill off a number of other important species native to that ecosystem. Instead of trying to change your environment to fit certain kinds of plants, it would be more effective (and easier) to change your plants to fit the environment.
So go with native plants, rather than with succulents and other desert plants, which don’t seem to be native to your land. Native plants will be the in the best, hardiest position to survive in your environment. Still, there are things you can do to make watering easier. Landscaping with furrows or shallow holes so that water flows to and gathers around your plants; using a mulch or cover crop to protect the soil from heat and limit evaporation; mixing in organic material and other minerals that help the soil retain water; and changing your watering habits (early in the morning, before the sun comes up and evaporates much of the water) could all help so that you have to water relatively little.
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