Plant your native plant, mulch heavily and then saturate the site with water. Put enough water down to almost float the mulch. This first watering must settle the voids around the newly planted root ball, recharge the water reservoir in the soil and leach the tannins out of the mulch and into the soil.
Most drought tolerant plants do not like wet feet nor the way drip irrigation delivers the water (some trees have root systems that are mostly horizontal, while drip irrigation delivers the water vertically). The ecology of drip irrigation is a pond or lake. It's like planting the plant into a pond, for as long as the drip is on. If you water for four hours once per week with drip, picture the plant up to its leaves in a pond for four hours, every week. If you can move the emitters out away from the plants drip line as the plant grows that is acceptable for riparian and ruderal-type plants. Black polyethylene drip line is only good in towns and cities. In rural areas it is a chew toy for the rodents, see the critter section.
During the dry season, most native plants love to have a sprinkler wash the foliage off every one to two weeks. A low volume sprinkler running for 10-15 minutes is all that you need to make a dramatic difference in the appearance and health of plants like manzanitas and Ceanothus. You can do this by hand if you wish with DAVE'S BEER WATERING. After a bad day in the office, or every Monday, (no more than once per week folks), grab a beer, coffee, tea, water, whatever and a hose. Spray the foliage and splash the ground until the beer is gone. Your yard work is done. Hard work but someone has to do it.For some sample plant lists with good watering and bad watering. Click here.