So I went to the meeting at Jen Cline's house the other day. A fellow from the National Wildlife Federation talked about how getting your yard certified is easy and, more importantly, why it's a good thing. We're not talking about encouraging raccoons, possums or feral cats. In an urban setting the wildlife we're after is mostly birds, bees and butterflies.
To attract this kind of wildlife, you need to offer the same essentials outside your house that you offer the wild life inside: Food, water and shelter. Most of us have some plants that produce seeds or berries or pollen. Planting native species can offer more alternatives and cut down on watering and fertilizer use. And a water source can be as simple as bird bath or a terra cotta dish that fills up when it rains.
I'm going to take another serious look at the mess that is my yard, and see if I can come up with a plan that will improve not only its looks (wouldn't be hard to do) but also its value to birds, bees and butterflies. And then I think I'll spring for the $15 fee and see if I can get certified. Maybe you'd like to too?