Category: Ecological Services

Book Review: Rainwater Harvesting for Drylands and Beyond by Brad Lancaster

Review by Pam Sherman Brad Lancaster lives in a city which gets 11 inches of rain a year. Tucson AZ is one water-stressed city in the desert, getting its city water from the Colorado River 300 miles away. He writes: “we’d typically have more free local water than we need if we’d consciously harvest it, […] Continue reading "Book Review: Rainwater Harvesting for Drylands and Beyond by Brad Lancaster"

Consider Native Sedges in Your Landscape

By Jonathan Sciarcon Sedges are “grass-like plants” in that they have skinny green stems, but they are not grasses. Sedges, unlike grasses, are in the Cyperus (Cyperaceae) family, have solid, triangular stems (occasionally round). They are not jointed or hollow like grasses. When looking at the stem, you can see the leaves are in three […] Continue reading "Consider Native Sedges in Your Landscape"

Colorado Native Shrubs for Bird Habitat

By Jenifer Heath I have spent several years transforming my yard and specifically building low-water (xeric) and mostly native plant habitat for pollinating insects, and only incidentally for birds and other creatures. This winter I decided that I’d like to make a bigger effort to support birds specifically. Bird habitat should provide water, food, shelter […] Continue reading "Colorado Native Shrubs for Bird Habitat"

Ditch the Peat Moss!

By Ayn Schmit Sustainability of the materials we use in our landscapes is an increasing focus for many gardeners, from the use of gravel mulch (gravel mining harms rivers and wetlands) to the source of soil amendments. Gardeners in the U.S. have relied on peat moss for years for its ability to retain water and […] Continue reading "Ditch the Peat Moss!"

Why Go Beyond Xeriscaping to Coloradoscape?

Primary authors: Deb Lebow Aal & Danna Liebert The Front Range of Colorado is (or was) a short grass prairie ecosystem. That is what issupposed to be here, or at least what was here before European settlers came. Those plants that were here before Europeans arrived we refer to as native plants. The plants that […] Continue reading "Why Go Beyond Xeriscaping to Coloradoscape?"

Protecting Colorado Native Bee Habitat | Spring Stem Cleanup

By Jenifer Heath Honey bees are native to Europe and were imported to the U.S. There are over 900 different bee species that are native to Colorado. About 30 percent of our native bee species nest in stems. Most are not yellow and black and only 12 percent of species are social; the rest are […] Continue reading "Protecting Colorado Native Bee Habitat | Spring Stem Cleanup"

So Many Alternatives to Non Native Turf

By Deb Lebow Aal; Updated October 2023 by Jen Smith Here we are again, talking about grass. I mean the Kentucky Blue Grass (KBG) and other non-native expanses we use as our default landscape. We wrote articles on this in past Wild Ones Front Range chapter newsletters (That Non Native Turf Grass Has Got to […] Continue reading "So Many Alternatives to Non Native Turf"

Colorado Native Oaks, Again!

By Deb Lebow Aal I have written an article on Gambel Oaks, and another article on why all native plants are not equal. This article combines the two, and coins the term super native plants! Oak trees are super native plants, as anyone who listened to Doug Tallamy’s talk on oaks last month knows. Doug’s […] Continue reading "Colorado Native Oaks, Again!"