Did you know? Residential yards and neighborhoods can benefit water quality, provide resources for wildlife and reduce resources (money, time, water, fertilizer, etc.).
This page offers resources for people who would like to incorporate new approaches to their landscaping. The City of Burnsville also offers numerous workshops for an in-person learning experience.
What type of project is right for you?
- Meadow lawn (or native planting): great for larger areas and having a high wildlife and water quality impact.
- Pollinator lawn: keep the lawn aesthetic and usability, while providing flowers for bees.
- Native garden: provides food and shelter for birds and pollinators even in small ’pocket plantings.’
- Rain garden: improves water quality by reducing runoff from your property into the street.
- Shoreline restoration: reduces runoff into your lake or pond, and reduces erosion issues.
It is important to follow City ordinances when installing a project. Follow the links to learn about the ordinances related to your project during the planning process.
|Native garden||Pollinator lawn||Meadow lawn/Native planting|
Planted native plants create a traditional garden look.
Mix of grass and low-growing flowers create a usable and beneficial lawn.
Native grass and wildflower seeds create a small meadow or prairie.
(per 100 sq. ft.)
|Installation||Remove sod, plant, and mulch||Remove sod and seed|
-OR- Overseed into grass
|Remove sod and seed|
|Maintenance||Weeding, spot mulching every few years||Weeding, mowing (raise mower height), periodic overseeding||Weeding, mowing every other year|
|Benefits||Moderate environmental value, easy to maintain||Moderate pollinator value, less maintenance than traditional lawn||Highest environmental value, low maintenance long term|
|Other||Best for small areas||Best where turf is still desired||Best for large areas|
|Ordinance||No specific ordinance.||See related ordinance. Landscape plan not required.||See related ordinance & how to submit the required landscape plan.|
Choosing which plants to incorporate into your landscape can be a challenging task, as there are so many options! Here are some considerations when deciding plants:
- Choose native and local (within 100-200 miles) plants and seed.
- Choose plants that bloom at different times, so that from early spring to late fall there is always a floral resource for pollinators.
- Choose plants that benefit certain species, like birds, monarch butterflies or the endangered rusty-patched bumble bee.
- Dakota County SWCD's Landscaping for Clean Water Workshops - Register for spring 2023
- Going Native - A Prairie Restoration Handbook for Minnesota Landowners (MN DNR)
- Board of Water and Soil Resources provides detailed information about different project types and the Lawns to Legumes cost-share program
- Landscaping with Native Plants (DNR)
- University of Minnesota Bee Lawn Resources
- Blue Thumb Partners lists vendors or companies that offer services
- Minnesota DNR General Native Plant Info - includes list of native plant suppliers/landscapers
- Minnesota DNR Native Plant Encyclopedia
- Blue Thumb Plant Finder creates a plant list after the user enters a set of conditions (light exposure, plant type, bloom time)
- Dakota County SWCD Tree Sale
- Scott County SWCD Tree, Shrub and Native Seed Sale
- Minnesota Wildflowers is a plant identification tool with many different search functions
Learn more about planting for pollinators in the Wildlife section.