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In Clark County, properties come in a wide range of sizes and locations. Some county residents have urban or suburban lots that are constrained by neighborhood associations. But many others may have property where it is possible to orchestrate some sort of wildlife habitat. One way or the other, we encourage you to make sustainable green landscaping choices when choosing plants and for your maintenance practices.


We have not found the perfect resource with step-by-step instructions on exactly how to wrap your head around the design, plant selection and installation of a natural landscape. There are so many nuances. Creating natural sustainable habitats is a challenge, but these resources will help you get started.

The Real Gardens Grow Natives and Landscaping for Wildlife in the Pacific Northwest books are written by regional experts. These books address most issues concerned with planning and installing a natural landscape.


Resources for garden and landscape maintenance, and answers to some of the most common questions.

  • Natural Yard Care

    Natural Yard Care pdf — Washington State Department of Ecology.

    This is generally a good overall guide about caring for your landscape. But we take issue with a few things like:

    • Using compost as mulch. — It is now pretty well established (at least for our area) that fresh, un-composted, woody matter makes the best mulch and that it should cover compost.
    • Mowing lawn 1–2” high. — We are recommending lawn height of at least 3”.
  • Month-By-Month Gardening in Washington & Oregon

    Month-By-Month Gardening in Washington & Oregon — by Mary Robson & Christina Pfeiffer.

    A go-to guide for our region’s gardeners.

  • Pruning & Growing

    How to prune everything under the sun in our area.

    • Cass Turnbull’s Guide to Pruning

      • Cass Turnbull’s Guide to Pruning — Cass Turnbull.
        A great overall pruning guide for woody plants — trees & shrubs. Explains pruning principles behind why certain plants should be pruned in certain manners. Simply excellent!
    • Pruning Ornamental Woody Plants

    • Evergreen Shrubs

    • Blueberry

      • Blueberry pdf — Goodnight Design.
        Handout from the class they teach.
      • Blueberry pdf — Oregon State University Extension.
        Everything you need to know about growing blueberries.
    • Fig

      • Fig — Fruit Trees & More.
        Prune early crop figs for cool season climates (like PNW).
    • Grapes

      • Grapes pdf — WSU Extension.
        Basic Guidelines for pruning grapes in home gardens.
    • Hazelnuts

      • Hazelnuts pdf — Oregon State University Extension.
    • Kiwi

      • Kiwi — Michael McConkey.
        Prune like a shrub for maximum production. Who knew?
      • Kiwi — Oklahoma Gardening.
        Build a trellis to hold a huge kiwi plant.
    • Raspberry

      • Raspberry — Michigan State University Extension.
        Summer pruning.
      • Raspberry — Gurneys Seeds.
        Winter Pruning.
      • Raspberry pdf — Oregon State University Extension.
        Everything you need to know about growing raspberries.
    • Red-twig Dogwood

      • Red-twig Dogwood — Goodnight Design.
        Using shrub dogwoods in landscape settings.
    • Renovation Pruning

      • Renovation Pruning — Royal Horticulture Society.
        Different ways to renovate old or poorly pruned shrubs.
    • Root Pruning

      • Root Pruning — Fine Gardening Magazine.
        Necessary maintenance for potted woody plants.
    • Suckers & Water Sprouts

Related resources: Food Gardens in Landscape Features | Lawn | Grasscycling | Soil / Compost / Mulch

Related articles: Tolerant Mindset | Appropriate Plants