Articles

There’s a lot to learn about the native restoration industry. Below are a collection of helpful articles and blog posts.

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Using Sedges to Add Texture to your Garden
Many sedges thrive in shade and not only blend beautifully with ferns and wildflowers, they can become easy care ground covers. Here are some of our favorites that do well when planted in the right site.
Read more>>

 


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Rain Gardens: A Sustainable Solution

Rain gardens can be a beautiful addition to your site and will attract beneficial pollinators while controlling storm water and run off. By choosing a wide range of native plants, you can enjoy flowers from spring into fall, stunning fall color and unique winter interest. Read more>>


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Spring Clean-Up

Spring is a special time in the Midwest where we shake off the weariness of winter and Mother Nature celebrates with a burst of color. Have you walked in the woods looking for spring wildflowers? Read more>>

 


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Late-Season Pollinator Partners

With autumn’s arrival, Aster and Goldenrod have taken the stage to not only dazzle with pretty flowers, but also offer rich nectar sources for pollinators. These staples of gardens and natural areas are an important late-season stop for bees, butterflies, moths, wasps, and more. Read more>>

 


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Milkweeds for Monarchs

Are you ready to welcome butterflies? Monarch populations are doing a bit better, but they could still use a boost. Try planting milkweed this year and be rewarded with monarchs and more. Their showy flower clusters also attract moths, skippers, bees, and beneficial wasps. Set your landscape to buzzing with milkweed. Read more>>


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Fantastic Native Ferns

One of the loveliest woodland plants is the fern. We have almost 20 species native to Illinois. Ferns add a particular grace to shade gardens or woodland areas and blend well with wildflowers and sedges. Read more>>

 


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Featured Project: Graceland Cemetery

A historic cemetery is breathing new life within its grounds. The trustees of Graceland Cemetery near Wrigleyville, Chicago wanted to recreate a piece of the tallgrass prairie that once covered much of the Chicago region. Our native plants and landscapes were an inspiration to O.C. Simonds whose innovative designs made the cemetery into a peaceful, pastoral place.
Read more>>

 


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Controlling Muskrat + Beaver Populations

Populations of Muskrats and Beaver have been rapidly increasing across the Midwest. These wetland-loving rodents have adapted to urban and suburban sites. They are particularly destructive to engineered stormwater solutions such as retention/detention ponds. Read more>>

 


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Spring Planning for Fall Burns

In the midst of spring, you might not think of autumn and the controlled burn season. However, spring is the perfect time to plan for your fall prescribed fire project. With permitting taking up to 90 days, it’s a good idea to get a jump on the process.
Read more >>

 


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Ecological Assessments

Successful ecological restoration begins with properly assessing a site. What kind of plants and animals are there? What is the topography? Is there water and how does it move? Walking a site allows landscape architects and planners to get to know its special characteristics and how to maximize resources to restore its natural beauty.  Read more >>


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Winter Clearing for Beautiful Results

Is winter clearing of invasive woody species part of your stewardship plan? Read more>>

 


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Benefits of Native Buffers

Clean, clear, healthy water makes a pond beautiful. One way to ensure pristine waters is by installing a buffer of native plants along the shoreline. Although conventional solutions like rock or turf may seem like a good way to defend your shoreline from erosion, natives offer far more tremendous benefits. Read more>>

 


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Stewardship: What does it mean?

You may have noticed the trucks and crews of Pizzo & Associates, Ltd. out and about in natural areas. The beautiful native plantings in common areas require regular stewardship to keep them looking their best. What is stewardship? Read more>>

 


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Weeds, Not Wildflowers
Invasive species are everywhere! Here is a selection of common species that should be controlled in a natural area. Read more>>

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Weeds, Not Wildflowers: Part 2

Have you seen these weeds? These aggressive invaders are blooming along roadsides, in forest preserves, and in your own backyard. They are not native wildflowers and can smother our desirable species. Read more>>

 


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Weeds, Not Wildflowers: Part 3

The battle against invasive weeds never ends. Here are more species that should be controlled in your natural area. Read more>>

 


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Solutions for Algae
Algae are a problem in many ponds in the Midwest. It is caused by excessive nutrients, specifically nitrogen and phosphorous, in the water. These are commonly found in fertilizers used on lawns and agricultural crops. When it rains, they run off of lawns and fields and into the stormwater management system, ending up in your ponds.

How do you fix an algae problem? Read more>>


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Planning Pollinator Gardens
Consider planning an area for pollinators and create your own buzzing paradise. Pollinators are active from the first thaw past the first frost. Nectar rich native flowers are a quick and easy food source for your insect population. Here are some helpful tips for planning your own pollinator garden. Read more >>


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Nitrogen-Fixing Native Plants
Did you know that some of our native plants hold nitrogen in nodules on their roots that get released into the soil when the plant goes dormant? We find these plants to be doubly important in native landscapes and natural areas as they feed both pollinators and other plants.  Each adds a unique texture to your garden. Read more>>