Improving the biodiversity of our landscapes— specifically stemming the significant declines in insects, birds, and millions of species worldwide— requires re-establishing native plant landscapes. It also requires a commitment to ecological landscaping. But what is that? To us, it means gardening by working with ecological processes— leaving leaf litter and decaying plant stems as essential habitat for insects, understanding inherent soil and climate conditions, choosing the most appropriate native species for our site. There is so much to consider! Learn more about our philosophy here.
Mayflower or trailing arbutus (Epigaea repens) is much beloved for its fragrant flowers, which bloom early in spring. This species adorns the top banner of our website, and we chose it for many reasons. It grows throughout the Commonwealth and was selected a century ago to be our state flower. Beautiful, small but tough in its own way, it was also used medicinally by Native Americans. Its history, winding from relative abundance, to threatened status, and now legal protection, is emblematic of the challenges that so many of our native plants face.
We built this website for you— to make information about native plants, and the practice of smart ecological landscaping, much more widely available. We consider ourselves an "open source" nonprofit. Through this website and so many of our other programs, we offer tons of free information— access to resources, lectures, videos, ideas, and inspiration. Our goal is to change the world, to help all of us as humans better understand ourselves as part of a complex organic system, to make ecology more mainstream, and to include you in our community.
Just published in February!
This newest book by Doug Tallamy makes it very clear why all of us have an essential role to play in saving life as we know it on planet earth. But rather than dwelling in doom and gloom, he emphasizes the joy of taking action, and reminds us of the tremendous capacity for resilience that our ecosystems have when given the means to recover.
Tallamy is one of the most original and persuasive present-day authors on conservation. — E.O. Wilson