KEEP IT GREEN!!             
   We mentioned before that we can landscape your yard with native plants. Native plants are plants that grew naturally in pre-settlement times in this area. There are many benefits to using native plants in your landscape. Like any plant, they prevent erosion, reduce glare & noise pollution, provides oxygen and natural cooling, cleans the air of dust and chemicals, reduces runoff and enhances wildlife. The benfits of native plants can help the planet and your pocket.            
   Native plants are adapted to our climate, soil, insects, and wildlife. They have a greater chance of survival in our climate and therefore are less likely to need fertilizers, irrigation, and are much more resistant to most pests and diseases common in this area. You will notice an increase of wildlife like birds, butterflies, squirrels and beneficial insects. The native landscape will be lower maintenance; using less water, fertilizers, and pesticides. It does not cost any more for native plants as it does for the "exotic" plants that are more and more common in the landscapes. Going native will save you time and less money for the long run.            
   I have included a selection of native plants that can be used in your landscape. As you can see, native plants are bright and beautiful and this is just a small sample of the possibilities.     

  • The Armstrong Maple (Acer x freemani) can reach 15' tall in 5 years, requires part sun to full sun orange and red fall color.
  • The Oakleaf Hydrangea (Hydrangea quercifolia) is broad spreading, requires part sun to full sun with summer color.
  • The Bee Balm (Monarda didyma) will get 1 1/2'-2', requires full sun and blooms late summer.
  • The Winterberry (llex verticillata) can reach 5' tall, requires part sun to full sun and blooms in the spring.
  • The Blue Rug Juniper (Juniperus horizontalis 'Wiltoni') is a groundcover, requires full sun and stays green year round.
  • The Black Eyed Susan (Rudbeckia fulgida 'Goldsturm') can reach 2' tall, requires full sun and blooms summer and fall.
  • The Purple Coneflower (Echinacea purpurea) can reach almost 2' tall, requires full sun and blooms in the summer.
  • The Coreopsis Sunray (Coreopsis grandiflora) can reach about 2' tall, requires full sun and blooms late spring to fall.
  • The Lilac Flame Phlox (Phlox paniculata)  get about 1' tall, requires part sun to full sun and blooms in the summer.

    Your lawn posses a lot of green quality besides actually being the color green. The lawn puts off oxygen that could actually be enough for your entire family. It also converts carbon dioxide to oxygen which cleans the air. Your lawn also has a cooling effect on the atmosphere. Imagine how hot is would be if everyone had no lawn. Healthy grass slows water runoff, removing contaminants and trapping soil. That means less debris going in the storm drains and less purification process at the water plant.             
   There are a few other things you can do in your yard to KEEP IT GREEN. Rain barrels are an easy install and saves you from using your cities water. Use the water that would run out of your gutters to water your lawn and plants. Not only are you helping the environment but you don' t have to pay for the water. If you notice some unwanted pests on your flowers look at natural ways to get ride of them before applying any pesticides. There are many home remedies that are available for a variety of problems. Mulching your landscape beds provides organic feed for your plants as well as retaining water runoff to water them. Creating a compost pile for leftover foods, leaves, and clippings is a great way to reuse materials in your yard. Keeping some grass clippings on your lawn is an organic feed for the grass.             
   You can enjoy a GREEN landscape just as much, if not more than, a regular landscape. You know that you are doing something great for the environment.

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