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Sustainability

Bringing Butterflies Home

Keeping a healthy, robust butterfly garden throughout the fall is an essential tool in not only maintaining our current butterfly population, but also to hopefully increase it. Here are just a few suggestions Embassy designers suggest to their clients.

The Butterfly Dilemma

I am sure that you have heard by now  --  “the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has found that adding the monarch butterfly to the list of threatened and endangered species is warranted but precluded by work on higher-priority listing actions. With this decision, the monarch becomes a  candidate for listing under the Endangered Species Act…(U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Press Release, Dec. 2020)”  Essentially that means that as the number 8 candidate on the list, data on the monarch butterfly will be periodically reviewed until it either reaches the top of the list, recovers or becomes extinct. With the numbers of both Eastern and Western Monarchs dramatically plummeting across the entire North American continent, many question the ruling.

Eight Terrific Plants for a Water-wise Garden

 

If you’re like me, there are always holes to fill in the garden  --  a bare spot here that needs to be filled or a suffering plant that needs to be put out of its misery and replaced. In the past, I tended to pop in annuals for their cheerful bursts of color. This year, after seeing the impacts of a region coping with a long-term drought, my goals for my garden have changed. Instead of being seduced by  water-guzzling beauties, I am going to search for plants that give me water-wise beauty and sustainability.

The Summer Garden

In the best of times, keeping a summer garden fresh and appealing is a challenge. This year, with half of the lower forty-eight states experiencing unusual heat patterns and moderate to severe drought, the challenges are even greater.  There are, however, environmentally friendly ways to keep your garden blooming throughout the dog days of summer. 

Lessons From the Desert: Part 3  Using Water Wisely

One of the first places to begin implementing water-wise techniques is your lawn. Ironically, , watering your lawn is an important way to conserve water. An irrigation system, when designed and installed by well-trained, knowledgeable technicians, can save the client time, effort and money all the while protecting an extremely valuable natural resource. 

Rain Gardens -- 2021

If the term RAIN GARDEN brings an image of a weedy bog teeming with scores of mosquitoes and other unpleasant flying insects to your mind, then it’s time to update and edit that picture! 

Welcome back to our virtual tour of some of the world’s outstanding --  and unusual  --  botanical gardens.

Touring The World's Gardens -- From Home: Part 2

Welcome back to our virtual tour of some of the world’s outstanding --  and unusual  --  botanical gardens. For this trip, I thought we would start right here in the United States with a visit to a garden that is one of my personal favorites, the Desert Botanical Garden in  Phoenix, Arizona.

Great Winter Reads

Here in the Midwest, with its frigid days and frequent snowstorms, the winter months are the perfect time to immerse yourself in nature. No, you can’t head to the garden to putter, but you can curl up with a good book  --  or a magazine  -- or a blog -- or even a stack of seed catalogs to expand your horizons, learn something new and get your nature fix. 

I’m always searching for something new to dig into and through the years, recommendations from friends and from professionals in the field have led me to some outstanding reads. This year I asked the staff at Embassy Landscape Group to share some of their wintertime favorites. 

Not surprisingly, they’ve suggested some great choices.