Conservation Landscaping

To reduce our stormwater runoff and the pollution entering the Chesapeake Bay, as well as to create a healthier and more sustainable environment, the Conservancy’s Urban Greening Program encourages property owners throughout Lancaster County to consider conservation landscaping as an alternative to lawns and hardscapes.

What is Conservation Landscaping?

Conservation landscaping is a type of landscape management that utilizes native plants to create gardens that reduce runoff, prevent air and water pollution, and preserve natural resources, all while beautifying our yards and neighborhoods.  Native plants are used because they are more disease, pest, and drought resistant and better adapted to local soils. This allows for a reduction of fertilizer, herbicide, and pesticide application, benefiting wildlife and attracting pollinators.  Earthworms and soil microorganisms also benefit, improving soil quality.

Conservation Landscaping Reduces:
  • Time and money spent on yard maintenance
  • Gas use for mowing
  • Building heating/cooling costs
  • Fertilizer and pesticide/herbicide application
  • Soil erosion
  • Water use – According the U.S. EPA, “the typical suburban lawn consumes 10,000 gallons of water above and beyond rainwater each year.”
Consider Installing a Rain garden

A rain garden is a shallow landscaped area that can retain and filter several inches of water. During installation, some of the existing soil is removed and replaced with a sandy soil mix.

Additional Resources:

Build Your Own Rain Garden – Chesapeake Bay Foundation
Rain Garden Handbook for Western Washington State
Blue Water Baltimore
U.S. EPA – Greenscaping: The Easy Way to a Greener, Healthier Yard
Riparian Buffer Information

For more information, please call 717-392-7891 ext. 207 or email



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