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Fling Preview: Chickadee Gardens

Chickadee Gardens (1280x960)

What exists today is a relatively new and small urban garden on a typical Portland lot (50 x 100 feet).

I am proud to be certified “gold” by the Backyard Habitat Certification Program (which is a collaboration between Portland Audubon and the Columbia Land Trust).

In the garden, you will find some 200 species of Pacific Northwest natives, plus dozens of species of hardy perennials arranged mostly by color, none of which are invasive.

The garden is cram-packed with plants (a bit of an addiction, especially living so close to so many great nurseries) and also contains many enticements to attract wildlife: bird baths, thistle, sunflower and suet feeders, brush piles, mason bee houses, a bat house and many pollinator flowers.

My primary interest is balance – visually balancing the many garden areas and maintaining a pesticide-free, healthy habitat for our native birds and insects, as well as for family and friends. I love experimenting with textures and colors and freely add to the garden when I feel it contributes to the big design picture.

In my attempts at balance, like any other gardener, I have experienced many mistakes. I am quite happy to toss out the old and go with the new—if it fits within the parameters set forth by the Backyard Habitat Certification Program and enhances the garden in some way.

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