Roberta Ducharme moved back to Wisconsin in 2014, after teaching in Hawaii for four years, and was lucky to find a little house with a large, open backyard and a small front lawn. Within a month she had planted a raised bed vegetable garden. Over the next few years, Rebecca Wainscott and her crew from Sacred Ground Landscape Design planted flower and shrub gardens, and eventually twelve trees all around the house and yard. It’s always been important to Roberta to garden organically and to create places of food and shelter for birds and butterflies and helpful insects. Her backyard is now full of singing birds and butterflies, where there had been nothing noticeable there when she first bought the house. That is gratifying to her. Rebecca has now retired, so this year Roberta worked with Sara Washburn, from Second Nature at Read’s Creek, to design a native shrub and flower garden in her front yard for butterflies and birds – something that will also create privacy and interest in all seasons. Roberta was inspired by Tom Lukens’ blog on native plantings on the Valley Stewardship Network website and was able to find shrubs at Second Nature and flowers for Monarch butterflies from Prairie Nursery in Westfield, Wisconsin. Roberta hopes to continue to add native plantings each year to expand the spaces that she’s created. There’s no doubt that it’s a lot of work, but worthwhile work that ultimately provides satisfaction and pleasure in helping nature thrive.