Help us regenerate biodiversity in our local ecosystem!
2023 Crestwood Goal: 10,000 square feet of new native plantings.
Our ecosystem relies on complex food webs of native plants, insects, and animals. Many of these populations are declining, with consequences that ripple across the natural community.
By generously planting beneficial native plants, removing invasives, and shrinking our lawns, Crestwood can provide food and habitat for native birds and pollinators and help foster a healthy local ecosystem.
Designing for beauty and biodiversity regeneration by planting native plants deepens our appreciation of the amazing interconnections between plants, animals, insects, birds, and humans. In addition to being beautiful and supporting pollinators and other wildlife, our gardens and yards in Crestwood can sequester carbon, support clean water in Rock Creek, and contribute to our collective physical and mental health.
What should I do?
Plant native! Native plants support 10 to 100 times more insect species than nonnative plants do. Certain keystone species play particularly important roles. If in doubt, start with these. If you add even just one new native plant, you will see a new world of pollinators in your yard!
Don’t plant invasives, and remove any that you see! We all love some of our non-native plants such as peonies and daffodils, even though they provide limited support to the ecosystem. It’s ok to keep some beloved non-natives as long as they are not invasive— i.e., they don’t aggressively crowd out native plants. Common garden invasives that are threatening Rock Creek Park include English Ivy, Porcelain Berry, Privet, and Burning Bush.
Go for more plants and less lawn! Lawn grass does not support our pollinator communities— in many ways, it is a biological desert. Consider shrinking your lawn over time in favor of additional plantings.
Help us meet our goal! We will track our progress through the nation-wide grassroots effort, Homegrown National Park, which maps individual pledges and action across the United States. By the end of 2023, we hope to see 50 households and 10,000 square feet in new native plantings. To help us measure our progress in 2023, please input any existing native plantings to the map by March 1, and input any new plantings you add after that to help us make our 2023 goal!
Learn more! We particularly like Doug Tallamy’s books Nature's Best Hope: A New Approach to Conservation that Starts in Your Yard and The Living Landscape: Designing for Beauty and Biodiversity in the Home Garden.
What do I do to report my plantings?
Go to https://map.homegrownnationalpark.org and create an account. It’s quick! Once you have an account, you can establish your personal planting goal and add information on your plantings. It will ask you to input a brief description of your planting, the approximate date of planting, its size, and location. Then you will be on the map!
If you’d like to learn more about this effort, make a pledge, have bright ideas or resources to share, or want to be part of neighborhood-wide implementation, please contact Anna Nelson.