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Nature popping! Outdoor Greening Sacred Spaces Fact Sheets

Resources. Guides. Nature. Biodiversity. Gardens. Habitat. Pollinators. Vegetables. Community.
Biodiversity Day: Building a shared future for all life. Living in harmony with nature.

Developed in 2017 by our Green Sacred Spaces Ottawa chapter, these ten downloadable Outdoor Greening Factsheets cover the following topics:
1. Sustainable Lawns, Groundcovers and Alternatives
2. Landscaping for energy-savings
3. Stormwater Management
4. Water Conservation and Drought-tolerant Landscaping
5. Hedgerows
6. Choosing and planting Native Trees & Shrubs
7. Wildlife-friendly Garden
8. Bird-friendly Garden
9. Urban Meadows
10. Special Purpose Gardens: Healing, Meditation, Medicine Wheel, Labyrinth Gardens

Highlights of Fact Sheet 1: Sustainable Lawns, Groundcovers and Alternatives

Lawns are the ubiquitous suburban (and even urban) landscape. Lawns offer a place to play, a serene landscape and a soft ground cover to walk upon. It’s a calming setting for a building, taming the wild and unruly wilderness and managing the relentlessness growth and inundation of unwanted plants. Many institutions including faith communities, choose lawns as they are a familiar landscaping option with well-understood maintenance requirements.

Native Plants to Consider as Ground Cover:

Blue Eyed Grass (10 – 40 cms high) is a lovely morning flowering iris that can tolerate dry conditions. It likes a bit of shade and looks lovely combined with Tickseed or Prairie Smoke.
Field Pussytoes (up to 30 cms high) is a member of the aster family that likes dry sun. It can form a dense mat of its small spring blooming flowers.Provides habitat for bees, moths and butterflies.
Canada Anemone (30 – 60 cms high) offers both white spring flowers and interesting seed heads and is a great ground cover with its lobed leaves.This plant is great for both shade and full-sun.
Sweet Cicely (45 – 90 cms high) is a woodland plant that can also be planted in sunny spots. It
spreads quickly so creates great ground cover but will need to be thinned annually.
Fireweed (50 cms – 200 cms high) is a plant that likes partial shade to sunny spots and tolerates dry conditions. It quickly spreads by seeds and roots and is an early colonizer in natural areas.

Download factsheet here.

Living in Harmony with Nature

Let your sacred space be an example of your stewardship and commitment for caring for creation.  Our many garden resources offer guidance and inspiration to help you learn to live in harmony with nature and restore the sacred balance of the Earth. Learn about sustainable practices for water and energy including xeriscaping, rain gardens, and water-wise strategies with our Outdoor Greening Fact Sheets. Read about the possibilities of turning a section of your faith community property into an ecological haven for wildlife including pollinators such as insects and birds. Get to know more about the benefits of planting native species of grasses, flowers, shrubs, and trees for your new meditation or prayer garden or in your memorial grounds. Click here for more of our gardening resources.

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