Choose Native Landscaping

By Crystal Stevens

One of the images that come to mind in the summer is a freshly mowed lawn with beautiful landscaping. Unfortunately, most landscape companies are not practicing sustainable techniques. With over 300,000 residents in St. Louis alone, non sustainable front and back yards can truly leave a negative carbon foot print. Pesticide and herbicide residue can be found in not only the soil, but also the water supply and even the air long after these chemicals have been applied to lawns. Over exposure to these chemicals has been linked to many life threatening illnesses such as cancer. There is no need for chemical applications. Beautiful lawns can certainly be achieved sustainably.

Transitioning to a more sustainable lawn is a wonderful way to make a green contribution to the future of the planet. Attracting pollinators through native landscaping is crucial and will make a huge difference. Get out and be inspired by individuals in the St. Louis area who have taken a stance to avoid chemicals on their lawn and who use sustainable landscaping methods. Don’t miss the Sustainable Backyard Tour on Sunday, June 22nd 11am-4pm and tour over 30 yards which have replaced invasive and energy intensive plants with native flowers, shrubs and trees. Get ideas for backyard chickens, rainwater catchment, compost bins, and other great urban homesteading ideas. Visit www.sustainablebackyardtour.com for more info.

One St. Louis based landscaping company, Simply Sustainable Landscaping LLC, has been taking landscaping to the next level since 2010. Joseph Heller founded Simply Sustainable Landscaping after “noticing a need for sustainable landscape solutions in the St. Louis area”. Simply Sustainable Landscaping is owned by Joseph Heller and his fiancée, Brandy McCLure. Their crew of seasoned experts is comprised of fellow sustainable landscaping enthusiasts David Carter, Tristan Walker, Richard Abbot, and Brent Shasserre. Joseph hires individuals who share in his visions of earth stewardship.

Joseph’s specialties include landscaping with native plants, following organic practices, and invasive plant species removal, with an emphasis on planting perennial flowers, shrubs and trees instead of annuals. He goes above and beyond by not only meeting the individual needs of clients, but also by educating his clients about proper plant care.

Brandy’s specialties include business management, job support, artistic landscape design, and integrating medicinal herbs and edibles into landscapes. Together, Joseph and Brandy collaborate on the creative process of landscape design. Joe chooses the plant material and draws a rough sketch of his vision. Brandy brings the vision to life in beautiful artistic rendition drawings of what the landscape will look like. They both enjoy creating gardens that are both aesthetically pleasing and functional.

Simply Sustainable Landscaping provides a solution focused service based on the individual needs and desires of their clients. They provide a diverse array of landscaping services, including but not limited to, native garden installation, small scale prairie restoration, rain garden installation, edible landscaping, vegetable garden installation, compost bin installation and education, as well as a variety of other landscaping services.

Their Top 10 full sun native plant varieties are Missouri Evening Primrose, Rattlesnake Master, Compass Plant, Purple Coneflower, Baptisia, Eastern Blazing Star, Prickly Pear, Smooth Hydrangea, White Fringe Tree, and Bur Oak.

Their Top 10 shading loving plant varieties are Virginia Blue Bells, Trillium, May Apple, Solomon’s Seal, Columbine, Jacobs Ladder, Witch Hazel, Flowering Dogwood, Sassafras, and Paw Paw.

Simply Sustainable Landscaping will be taking part in a field day sponsored by the Audubon Society with a focus on the removal of the notoriously invasive Bush Honey Suckle.

Get on board with changing the world, one lawn at a time. Simply Sustainable Landscaping offers Free Estimates for new clients who already have a design in mind.

Visit their website at www.simplysustainablelandscaping.com Contact Joseph Heller at 314-698-6200.

Garden Heights Nursery at 1605 S. Big Bend Blvd. is an excellent resource for buying native flowers, shrubs and trees.