The People’s Garden Initiative and Keep America Beautiful are asking Americans to join us in supporting local ecosystems by planting species native to their area this fall. The first ever National Planting Day will take place on Saturday, September 8 and will continue with activities happening through November 30.
Fall is widely considered the best time of year to plant native species of trees, shrubs, grasses, vines and perennials. The term “native” refers to all species of plants naturally occurring, either presently or historically, in any ecosystem of the United States. You can conserve water, protect soil from erosion and create habitat for wildlife simply by planting native species. A native plant garden also can supply a community with beautiful flowers, and raise awareness about the importance of protecting and restoring local ecosystems for future generations.
Help us raise awareness about gardening with natives by taking action in your community in any of these ways:
- We’re calling on People’s Gardens across the country to participate in National Planting Day. If your People’s Garden is planning a planting event, register it here.
- Community groups, businesses and individuals can register planting events too.
- Spread the word! Tell your friends and family about the importance of native species, and get them involved in National Planting Day. Learn more at www.getgrowing.org.
- Start a native plant garden in a highly visible location in your community. This garden can be a demonstration garden, promoting the beauty and function of native plants to your neighbors.
- National Planting Day is a great opportunity to include students in schoolyard greening events where students not only learn about flora native to where they live but become active in a community project.
- Want to lend a gardening glove? Join a volunteer effort to beautify your community during National Planting Day.
- Tweet your support @PeoplesGarden #NationalPlantingDay
For a community garden to receive the designation of a ‘People’s Garden’ it must meet three criteria: The garden must 1) benefit the community, 2) be a collaborative effort and 3) incorporate sustainable practices such as planting native species. If yes to all three, register your garden at http://www.usda.gov/peoplesgarden and request a free sign to show your support.