March 30, 2020
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Landscaping with native groundcovers

Community Author: Belfast Garden Club
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Knox-Lincoln Soil & Water Conservation District | Contributed
Knox-Lincoln Soil & Water Conservation District | Contributed

BELFAST — The Belfast Free Library and Belfast Garden Club will cosponsor a program on the advantages of using native groundcovers to replace “un-used” areas of lawn on your property. Hildy Ellis, program manager for Knox-Lincoln Soil & Water Conservation District, will give the talk and Powerpoint presentation, which will take place at the library beginning at 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 28. The program is free and open to all.

Groundcovers are plants that spread and crowd out weeds and prevent erosion by holding the soil. They also boost the biodiversity of your landscape, literally from the ground up! Unlike lawn grasses, native groundcovers provide food and habitat for birds, bees, and other pollinators. As a bonus, they offer color and texture throughout the year. Planting native groundcovers won’t take the place of lawn used for recreation, but it can create a fairly low-maintenance alternative to lawn grasses.

Ellis has lived in midcoast Maine since the mid-1970s. Before earning a degree in horticulture and doing graduate research on invasive plants at the University of Maine, she worked in a variety of Camden businesses and as a professional gardener. For four years, she was the director of education at Bowman’s Hill Wildflower Preserve in New Hope, Pennsylvania. Ellis wears many hats at the Knox-Lincoln Soil & Water Conservation District, including webmaster, outreach speaker and plant sale and event organizer.

The Belfast Garden Club has promoted the creation and care of public gardens and presented speakers to stimulate the knowledge and love of gardening for more than 90 years. The 2020 Winter Program Series includes topics about conservation and the environment. For more information, visit BelfastGardenClub.org.