Landscaping Sustainability

Margaret Buranen, reporting for Ensia:

Landscaping can do more than increase property values. It can reduce energy use and clean air and water while providing wildlife habitat and connecting people to nature.

Such benefits are now measurable — thanks to guidelines and a rating system developed by the Sustainable SITES Initiative™, a program of the American Society of Landscape Architects, the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center at the University of Texas at Austin, and the U.S. Botanic Garden.

Designers or site owners can submit any type of landscaping project for SITES certification. To earn SITES credits they provide documentation of sustainable strategies used. SITES certification, like LEED ratings, can be a marketing advantage. It also makes the public aware of both the firm’s and the client’s commitment to sustainability.

Check out the Sustainable Site Initiative for the rating system and recommendations: