Designing for Ecology

Mary Beth H.:                    Hi, this is Mary Beth Harrison with Dallas Native Voice. And today, I’m with Nancy Payne with Roundtree Landscaping. And I love the topic of our conversation today. You call it Designing for Ecology, is that correct?

Nancy Payne:                     That’s correct.

Mary Beth H.:                    Oh my gosh. Talk to me about that because this is the coolest thing ever.

Nancy Payne:                     So, Designing for Ecology makes you remember times when you used to come out to your garden or your yard, and you used to hear the birds, and used to see the butterflies, and you used to see a lot of colorful flower.

Mary Beth H.:                    Yes.

Nancy Payne:                     And you don’t see that too much anymore.

Mary Beth H.:                    No, not with our bushes that go here, and maybe a few little plants on a patio.

Nancy Payne:                     Exactly.

Mary Beth H.:                    That’s about all most of us get.

Nancy Payne:                     Exactly. So, Designing for Ecology is basically being mindful as to what this wildlife like, like the pollinators, and the birds, and the color butterflies, what do they like?

Mary Beth H.:                    So, you build it, they will come?

Nancy Payne:                     If you build them, they will come.

Mary Beth H.:                    Wow, okay.

Nancy Payne:                     So, you’ll basically build a garden that they will enjoy coming to.

Mary Beth H.:                    I like that.

Nancy Payne:                     And that brings nature closer to you, and it makes your garden more enjoyable for everybody.

Mary Beth H.:                    So, give me an example of a few flowers that we can plant in our yard that would bring butterflies.

Nancy Payne:                     So for example, lantana, a native lantana is one of the best ones that attracts pollinators, bees, butterflies, all sorts of moths.

Mary Beth H.:                    And it comes back every year, doesn’t it?

Nancy Payne:                     Back every year.

Mary Beth H.:                    So, you don’t have to keep re-planting it, and go back and do it again, that’s the best.

Nancy Payne:                     So, most of these plants are natives because that’s what the animals grew up with, right? That’s what the pollinators like.

Mary Beth H.:                    Well, that makes sense. I live here, I want to eat what’s here, right? I don’t want to eat what’s in Africa. Right, I get it.

Nancy Payne:                     So, you want to eat what’s native. And they’re also water-wise. So, if you plan your garden, and you take the time to design for ecology, keeping them in mind, you avoid this kind of what I call a food desert landscape, which is a landscape that looks very green, but has no sound and has no vivaciousness to it.

Mary Beth H.:                    I could live off that diet and look really good, but somehow I don’t think the wildlife can handle that.

Nancy Payne:                     They can’t.

Mary Beth H.:                    I love that. So, we can make our surroundings such that we invite nature in. And who wouldn’t want that in their backyard, to look out and see butterflies, and animals going around? And I just love that whole thing. It would make you feel like you live in the woods, and yet, there you are in the center of the city.

Nancy Payne:                     And it makes you happy, it makes your family happy, and children love it. So, people get really excited when they’re in that environment.

Mary Beth H.:                    I absolutely love this topic. If you want to know more about building your life around wildlife, and having them come to you, instead of you having to go to them on a trip, sit in your backyard and enjoy it all the time, you can find us on We go where you go, so you’ll find us on all social media. And you can also go to Roundtree Landscaping and find out more about this great topic. Thanks so much.

Nancy Payne:                     You’re welcome [crosstalk 00:02:44]-

Mary Beth H.:                    Thanks for listening.

Nancy Payne:                     We’ll help you plant for life.


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