Early this year, our Northern Kane County Wild Ones invited Jim Kleinwachter of The Conservation Foundation of DuPage and Kane Counties to speak  about Conservation@Home, a program that helps property owners protect and create yards that are environmentally friendly. The following criteria is used for designation:

Property must have some native plant components for the benefit of water conservation and/or for wildlife.

There should be clear evidence of stewardship of the land (invasive species control and other management issues)

Property along creeks, rivers, or a pond should be managed to prevent erosion and pollutants.

Protection of existing natural areas as well as creation of new areas is highly encouraged.

If you already have a ecologically sound garden, you are eligible for a plaque like the one shown above.  If not, Jim or another qualified consultant, will come to your house and provide simple, easy-to-implement steps to encourage conservation-friendly practices.   Call Jim at 630-428-4500 to make an appointment.

If you live in the Barrington area, call 847-381-4291

If you live in Lake County, call 847-548-5989

Our Wild Ones chapter set a goal of receiving 10 new Conservation@Home designations in 2012, which we were able to accomplish.  At our year end Holiday Pot Luck Supper, I provided a slide show that featured all the new designees plus 6 others that had been designated in previous years.

You don’t have to be a member of Wild Ones to receive this designation or to get advice from Jim; although, if you’re interested in conservation, our group is a great place to learn more about native plants and meet like-minded friends.

Here are our plaque holders:

Front yard

New terrace with rain channels.


Overlooking creek with Wild Blue Phlox (Phlox divaricata) at top.

Good use for buckthorn–a fence.


Savanna garden


Entrance garden in October with Prairie Dropseed (Sporobolus heterlepis).


My side yard in October.

East-facing slope with Witch Hazel (Hamamelis virginiana), Illinois Rose (Rosa setigera), and Dwarf Bush Honeysuckle (Diervilla lonicera).

Flower garden with Yellow Coneflower (Ratibda pinnata) and Purple Coneflower (Echinacea purpurea).

Clearing in the prairie garden with Asters and Goldenrod.

Vegetated swale with Blue Flag (Iris virginica var. shrevrei)


Flower garden with Black-eyed Susan  (Rudbeckia hirta) and Purple Coneflower (Echinacea purpurea).

Savanna with a floor of  Wild Geranium (Geranium maculatum)



Controlled burn that benefits all native gardens.

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