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Natural Awakenings Milwaukee

Uplifting All Life Forms in the Yard and Garden

Nov 28, 2011 09:55PM ● By Diane M. Olson-Schmidt

Now that winter and the holiday season is here, life in the gardens is at rest. Winter has its own beauty and is a time to relax and renew. Have you noticed how, when it is snowing, the sounds around you are insulated and muffled?

The holiday season is also a time for reflecting upon how to garden in a way that sustains other life forms that share this space with us. Good will should not only be directed toward men; it should include all living creatures, along with the air, the water, and even the rocks upon which we stand. How we live makes a difference in how long the Earth remains habitable for all life.

No other place is known to share the diversity of the Earth. We have the technology to prosper and live sustainably if we have the will. How we take care of our own yard, lawns and gardens can make a difference.

Here are some easy and inexpensive ways to make your lawn and garden more sustainable. The birds and wildlife will thank you with their sweetness and antics:

  • Stop using synthetic chemicals on lawns and gardens.
  • Add plants that attract butterflies, birds, bees and native pollinators.
  • Add water features to your garden beds.
  • Remember that birds and wildlife need safe tree and shrub cover, water and food, both wild and from feeders.
  • Explore the many books and publications on sustainable gardening, such as Birdscaping in the Midwest, by Mariette Nowak, and Bringing Nature Home, by Douglas W. Tallamy.


Diane Olson Schmidt is the owner of LaceWing Gardening, Design and Consulting Services, in Milwaukee. For more information, call 414-793-3652.

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