Open Gardens Project – Featuring Vonda’s Habitat

Site Information: Vonda’s habitat is located in Tigard, in the Cook Park area

What inspired you to enroll in the Backyard Habitat Certification Program?

It went along with beliefs I have about yards based on a book I read, “Noah’s Garden: Restoring the Ecology of Our Own Back Yards”.

How would you describe your habitat?

No pesticides and herbicides, downspouts have been disconnected, and I have placed several bird feeders approved by the Audubon Society and bird baths in the back yard. I also try to have at least 75% native plants. I also make sure to have bird decals on the windows near the bird feeders to keep the birds from flying into windows.

What are your top three favorite native plants and why do you love them?

  • Trilliums – just because! (I used to volunteer at Tryon Creek)
  • Bleeding Hearts – because they are so cute!
  • Evergreen huckleberry – because they remind me of picking huckleberries with my uncle.
Two of the favorites: Evergreen huckleberry and trillium

What changes have you observed as a result of creating habitat?

  • Neighbors always comment on the color variety of my yard.
  • Little frogs, bees, hummingbirds, and garter snakes all call my yard home now.

What were the two most significant challenges you encountered while creating habitat, and how did you address them?

Weeds! Constantly pulling weeds when other neighbors don’t do any weed control.

What resources did you find especially helpful?

  • Tryon Creek and Audubon Society.
  • Bosky Dell Natives
  • I only shop for plants at local nurseries or farmers markets.

How do you enjoy your Backyard Habitat throughout the different seasons? What are its highlights in each season?

The changing flowering and fruiting of the different plants.

What part of your backyard habitat are you most proud of?

The trilliums and the birds! And listening to the frogs.

Is there anything else you’d like to add about your journey?

Keep on keepin’ on!

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