Landscaping and Gardening
The landscape architecture community recognizes the tremendous opportunity it has to promote practices that best support ecological function and conserve natural resources in constructed areas. The industry has been placing increased importance on the promotion of sustainable landscaping, gardening with native plant species and reducing the need for nutrient and chemical inputs.
Founded in 1899, the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) is the national professional association for landscape architects, representing more than 15,000 members in 49 professional chapters and 72 student chapters.
The Ecological Landscape Alliance (ELA) is a nonprofit, member-based organization made up of professionals, businesses and pro-active community members who believe in using landscape practices that are environmentally safe and beneficial.
Million Pollinator Garden Challenge (MPGC) is a nationwide call to action to preserve and create gardens and landscapes that help revive the health of bees, butterflies, birds, bats and other pollinators across America.
New Directions in the American Landscape Symposium (NDAL) is a Pennsylvania-based not-for-profit organization that has provided leading edge educational workshops since 1990. NDAL’s forums explore issues and techniques relating to the design, implementation and management of landscapes based on natural models, in a cultural context.
Ohio Nursery & Landscape Association (ONLA) is a non-profit trade association, incorporated in the State of Ohio, representing the interests of the state’s nursery, garden center and landscape industry. Membership is comprised of nursery stock growers, landscape contractors and maintenance firms, garden centers, arborists and allied suppliers.
Pennsylvania Landscape & Nursery Association (PLNA) is the leading trade association representing Pennsylvania’s $6.8 billion green industry. Founded in 1904, its member landscape contractors, retail garden centers, wholesale nurseries and greenhouses produce outdoor living environments that improve economic value, air quality, water quality and human health.
Virginia Working Landscapes is a consortium of organizations with a mission to study and promote the sustainable use of Virginia’s landscapes for native biodiversity through ecosystem research, habitat monitoring and community engagement.
The Wildlife Habitat Council (WHC) promotes and certifies habitat conservation and management on working lands through partnerships and education.
Native Plant Identification and Information
The identification of native plant species and determining those that are best suited to a particular geographic location, climate and soil conditions can be a daunting task. There are a number of good resources to make these tasks less intimidating.
The USDA PLANTS Database provides standardized information about the vascular plants, mosses, liverworts, hornworts and lichens of the U.S. and its territories.
The Biota of North America Program is a repository database of information on North American vascular flora.
Native Seed Industry
Like any growing and developing industry, native seed producers rely on organizations whose mission is to represent the trade’s best interests, promote best practices and advocate on behalf of the industry at the local, state and federal levels. We are active members in a number of such organizations.
Established in 1883, the American Seed Trade Association (ASTA) continues to be the industry’s leading advocate for the development, marketing and movement of quality seed and associated products and services throughout the world.
The Atlantic Seed Association (ASA) is a regional trade organization comprised of companies that are regularly engaged in the production or buying and selling of agricultural and horticultural seeds or related products. Our members join because they want to become more professional and grow their business.
The Western Seed Association in 1899, when seedsmen organized a casual meeting in Kansas City, Missouri to discuss industry issues and to facilitate seed business. Over the years the annual meeting became known as the “Western” with seedsmen gathering principally from North America and several foreign countries.
Countless government and non-government organizations, groups, contractors and publications actively inform and assist the public with problems facing pollinators, including loss of habitat and the need to restore diverse native habitat for honeybees, butterflies and other native pollinators.
Are you looking for a service to install your pollinator habitat? Monarch Vegetation Services, Inc. (MVS) is an independently owned and operated mobile ecological restoration company that specializes in native and pollinator friendly vegetation. Whether your site is a solar farm, meadow, capped landfill, wetland, private or public land, MVS will install vegetation that is rooted in success.
American Bee Journal is a trade magazine dedicated to informing novice and professional beekeepers on best practices.
Bee Culture touts itself as “the magazine of American beekeeping.”
The Pollinator Partnership is a non-profit 501©3 organization– the largest organization in the world dedicated exclusively to the protection and promotion of pollinators and their ecosystems. Consider registering your meadow with Pollinator Partnership’s Simply Have Areas Reserved for the Environment (S.H.A.R.E.) program, with a goal to have 1,000,000 pollinator meadows planted across the country. This free registry is an easy way to make a difference.
The Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation is a nonprofit organization that protects wildlife through the conservation of invertebrates and their habitat.
Feed A Bee is a major initiative of Bayer CropScience and dozens of partners around the country to increase forage for honey bees and other pollinators, including growing 50 million flowers and providing additional forage acreage in 2015. By collaborating with organizations and individuals throughout the United States, Feed a Bee helps provide pollinators with the food they need not only to survive, but to thrive.
Increased private sector and government attention to the plight of pollinators such as honeybees and monarch butterflies has spurred a renewed interest in developing pollinator-friendly habitat across the North American landscape. One of the highest level examples of this was the White House announcement of the National Strategy to Promote the Health of Honeybees and Other Pollinators in 2015.
The 2018 Farm Bill continued to make pollinators and their habitat a priority for The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). Most importantly, the Farm Bill authorizes the Secretary of Agriculture to encourage “the development of habitat for native and managed pollinators; and the use of conservation practices that encourage native and managed pollinators” during administration of any conservation program. Learn more about conservation agriculture programs and initiatives available to farmers through the USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service.
Public-private partnerships, leveraged with pollinator-friendly habitat legislation has and will be critical to the development of utility sites as pollinator habitat. Minnesota-based Fresh Energy has become a nationally-recognized source of expert knowledge on solar sites planted with deep-rooted native flowers and grasses that capture and filter stormwater, build topsoil, and provide abundant and healthy food for bees and other insects that are valuable to agriculture. In 2018 Fresh Energy expanded this work and created the Center for Pollinators in Energy, a national clearinghouse and catalyst for pollinator-friendly solar information, standards, best practices, and state-based initiatives.