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Bee Friendly Yard Becomes Neighborhood Sanctuary

May 29, 2019

Woman standing in front of shoreline gardenFrom the front curb, it’s obvious that featureless green grass isn’t Cheryl’s priority. The lawn is dotted with white clover and dandelion blooms. A wide rain garden borders a curbside city storm drain, and garden signs announce that this is pollinator-friendly territory. Sprawling garden beds are already lush and blooming. They lead the eye to the back yard, which slopes down to the lakeshore where red-winged blackbirds chirp and flit between tall reeds.

Crooked Lake is one of the cleanest lakes in the metro, but it wasn’t always that way. Over the years, Cheryl witnessed firsthand the cumulative effect of chemical lawn treatments and pollution as milfoil shrouded the surface of the lake. Years of treatment have restored the lake’s clear waters, but Cheryl recognized this as a microcosm of global water issues. She’s dedicated to making a positive environmental impact by “saving the globe one yard at a time.”

Creating a yard that’s hospitable to pollinators is an ongoing process. Cheryl embraces the cycles of the season as opportunities to evolve her garden — and gradually reduce the amount of lawn. Her enthusiasm for environmentally responsible yard care has had a ripple effect. Kids visit her garden to search for caterpillars, and most of her neighbors have stopped treating their own lawns with chemicals.

[Read more on the Clean Water MN blog]