book cover: Landscaping for Wildlife
Landscaping for Wildlife
by Carrol L. Henderson
Includes instructions for drawing up plans for diverse projects from smaller flower gardens to shelterbelts. The appendix has a great plant list sorted by seasonal value. Written with US Northern Midwest states in mind.
book cover: Bringing Nature Home
Bringing Nature Home
by Prof. Douglas W. Tallamy
Dr. Tallamy is probably the leading voice for landscaping with native plants. This book explains why native plants are best. Here are some more details.
And here is a short article Prof. Tallamy wrote for the 3/11/15 edition of The NY Times.
book cover: Nature's Best Hope
Nature's Best Hope
by Prof. Douglas W. Tallamy
Another excellent book from Dr. Tallamy. Approaches the topic of landscaping and the environment from a little higher level. Proposes the idea of "Homegrown National Park". Here's more information and ideas about managing your yard as your own national park.
book cover: Native Plants for Northern Gardens
Native Plants for Northern Gardens
by Dr. Leon C. Snyder
Thorough list of many trees, shrubs, vines, ferns, flowers, and grasses. Includes growing instructions and recommendations for use. It also has photos for many species. I bought a copy at the University of Minnesota Landscape Arboretum.
book cover: Trees and Shrubs of Minnesota
Trees and Shrubs of Minnesota
by Welby R. Smith
The authority on trees and shrubs native to Minnesota. Provides photos and context for each species.
book cover: Birdscaping in the Midwest
Birdscaping in the Midwest
by Mariette Nowak
Very good book. Includes instructions for drawing a plan and choosing plants. Also has several inspiring case studies from others who have converted their yards from a traditional lawn to a native plant habitat.
book cover: Woodworking for Wildlife
Woodworking for Wildlife
by Carrol L. Henderson
Provides plans for building homes and shelters for specific bird species, toads, bumblebees, and more.
book cover: Wild About Birds - The DNR Bird Feeding Guide
Wild About Birds
The DNR Bird Feeding Guide
by Carrol L. Henderson
Provides information on attracting certain species, as well as ideas for different types of feed and feeders.
University of Minnesota Extension Service
Helpful information on selecting plants, planting, pruning, managing weeds, and much more.

Here are a couple examples:
Minnesota Department of Natural Resources
Includes information on native plant communities, sample yard designs, bird feeding tips, and more.

Here's a link to the backyard stewardship page:
screenshot: University of Minnesota Soil Testing Laboratory
University of Minnesota Soil Testing Laboratory
They can help you discover the details about the soil in your yard.
screenshot: University of Minnesota Plant Database
University of Minnesota Plant Database
Nearby nurseries may not offer certain species. This site can help.
A community of people interested in nature and willing to help you identify mystery birds, bugs, plants, etc.
screenshot: Minnesota Bird Atlas
Minnesota Bird Atlas
Provides an interactive map as well as details about where to find specific species in Minnesota.
screenshot: Outback Nursery
Outback Nursery
They have, by far, the best selection of native trees and shrubs I've found. The website has photos of most of them.
screenshot: Morning Sky Greenery
Morning Sky Greenery
Located near Morris, MN. They offer a good selection of flowers and grasses. They also offer seeds. And they will send them right to your door.
Their website has photos of most of their plants.
screenshot: Landscape Alternatives
Landscape Alternatives
Excellent selection of flowers and grasses.
screenshot: Cornell Lab of Ornitology
Cornell Lab of Ornithology
When the birds start showing up, this site can help identify them.
screenshot: University of Minnesota Bee Lab
University of Minnesota Bee Lab
The best place to learn about bees.
screenshot: Monarch Joint Venture
Monarch Joint Venture
Collection of organizations, like Monarch Watch, working to help monarch butterflies.
screenshot: Xerces
Xerces is a non-profit working towards the protection of invertebrates. The website has helpful guides for identifying bees and dragonflies that may visit your yard.
screenshot: The Meadow Project
The Meadow Project
With help from Dr. Douglas Tallamy, The Meadow Project produced a nice video that explains why native plants are important, and includes some examples of inspiring projects. The website can also help you find native plant nurseries and organizations in your part of the U.S.
screenshot: Pollinator Friendly Alliance
Pollinator Friendly Alliance
This site has helpful information in the Events and Resources sections.
screenshot: Butterflies and Moths of North America
Butterflies and Moths of North America
When the butterflies and moths start to show up, this site can help with identifying them.
screenshot: Minnesota Wildflowers
Minnesota Wildflowers
This site has a thorough and growing list of plants native to Minnesota. It includes photos and information for each.
Financial Assistance
screenshot: page: Hummingbird Facts
Lawns to Legumes: Your Yard Can BEE the Change
The Minnesota Board of Water and Soil Resources provides residents with up to $350 towards a native plant project.
screenshot: page: RWMWD Stewardship Grants
Ramsey-Washington Metro Watershed District
The Ramsey-Washington Metro Watershed District provides stewardship grants for projects that help improve rainwater management in that area.
Visitor Suggestions
screenshot: page: Old Louisville Student Conservation Association
Environmental issues are also human health issues. Minimizing the use of chemicals not only helps the wildlife in our yards, it directly helps ourselves. Nicole was willing to share this link to They assist people dealing with the effects of chemicals like glyphosate. She also provided a link to a page with Roundup alternatives. Thank you Nicole for these links and your work!
screenshot: page: Old Louisville Student Conservation Association
Old Louisville Student Conservation Association
Marc works for OLSCA. They endeavor to build young leaders that often move on to green careers. Another member, Juliana, found this page that shows how to build a bird feeder from a plastic bottle. It also includes a lot of information about bird watching, including an article about using weather forecasts to predict when migrating birds might visit your yard. Thank you both for this link and for your work!
screenshot: page: Hummingbird Facts
Fun Facts About Hummingbirds and How to Attract Them
Sarah found this excellent page. It has lots of information about hummingbirds. It also provides good ideas for attracting them to your yard, especially if you live in Texas. Harry is a library media specialist and was kind enough to suggest it for this page. Thank you!
screenshot: page: Guide to Binoculars for Bird-Watching
A Guide to Bird-Watching With Binoculars
Amelia and her father recently found this guide. It provides a great overview of binocular features that may improve your experience. It also has a good list of links to more resources for new birders.
Carol is a youth services librarian and educator. Amelia brought this link to Carol and they generously suggested it for this page. Thank you Amelia and Carol!
screenshot: page: Bird-Watching in the Playground
Bird-Watching in the Playground
Marlene serves as an assistant girl scout troop leader in California. Sarah participates in the same troop and found this excellent page. It provides some informative resources and is a great place to start for beginning bird watchers. It includes some links to leading conservation organizations and some ideas for indoor and outdoor activities with young people. Thank you Sarah and Marlene!
screenshot: organization: Botany for Kids
Botany Games and Resources for Kids
Katrina volunteers as a mentor for kids in her community. She and the kids wanted to share this link. It has a bunch of great activities for kids interested in learning about the science of botany. The resources include a short PBS video on botany basics, and an experiment that demonstrates photosynthesis and transpiration. Thank you for the link and for your volunteering!
screenshot: organization: Green Teens Club
Green Teens Club
Tyler sent this link to an organization that is clearly doing great things for their communities. Their website also provides some help for any of us looking for day-to-day things we can do to help the environment we all depend on. He also sent the below link to an easy-to-read article for people of all ages interested in getting started with bird watching. Thank you, Tyler!
screenshot: graphic: Official Birds of the United States
Official Birds of the United States
Trevor and Laura sent this fun graphic that shows the official bird for each state in the U.S. Thank you!
screenshot: article: The Complete Guide to Birdwatching
The Complete Guide to Birdwatching
Jane and Peter sent this article which provides a nice overview. It has links to more resources like an in-depth article on choosing optics, as well as guidelines for ethical birding. Thank you for sending!
screenshot: article: Birdwatching From Your Window
Birdwatching From Your Window
Cindy Powell and her Junior Scouts sent this article with links to many excellent resources for new birders. The links point to resources from several states in different parts of the U.S. Thanks!
screenshot: article: Beginners Guide to Birdwatching
Beginners Guide to Birdwatching
Linda and Ava sent this link to a well-rounded article for beginning birders. It includes links to pages that provide help with finding the right binoculars as well as finding and identifying birds in your area. Thank you!
screenshot: article: Identifying Birds in Flight
Identifying Birds in Flight
Tabitha and Anabel from Washington sent this link to a nice article. It has helpful information and links for anyone interested in getting started with bird watching. Thank you for sharing!
photo: cat eating wildlife
If you have a cat and keep it inside, thank you.
Because we don't think about future generations, they will never forget us.
Henrik Tikkanen