Purple coneflower photo/Cindy Hadish

Purple coneflower photo/Cindy Hadish

IOWA CITY – Backyard Abundance will host a free yard tour this Saturday, Aug. 2, to help residents learn how to create beautiful yards that are low-maintenance and benefit our environment.

The free tour will be at the townhome of Judy Joyce, at 903 Walker Circle in Iowa City, from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. Refreshments will be served.

 Here is more about the tour from the Iowa City-based nonprofit:

How can a diversity of Midwest native plants be beautifully arranged in an extremely small, highly visible, pesticide-free landscape that is friendly to bees, birds, and butterflies? Neighbors Judy, Brian, and Adrienne answered that question as they converted long strips of turfgrass into an all-native oasis around their shared townhome in the Iowa City Peninsula Neighborhood.

Features and Learning Opportunities

·         Best native plants for small spaces.

·         Establishing low-growing buffalograss as a maintenance-free frame around native plants.

·         Preparing soil to go from turfgrass to native plants.

·         Raised rain garden that infiltrates roof runoff to water plants and increase the health of urban streams.

·         Pervious pavement for storm water management.

·         Rain barrels to capture roof runoff for watering nearby plants.

·         Raised beds of native plants and vegetables.

·         Tidy compost bins for creating free plant nutrients.

·         Xeriscaping: landscaping that reduces or eliminates the need for supplemental irrigation.

Experts from the Coralville-based Earthview Environmental will be ready to answer questions about native plants and stormwater management practices.

For more information visit www.BackyardAbundance.org or call 319-325-6810.