Yard Tour 2017

Browse through our 2017 Yard Tour locations in this gallery! The tour featured a diverse array of naturescaped yards: large and small, homes and school yards, brand new and a decade old! We have listed some highlights here. Each description below also has a downloadable plant list.

Learn more on the Yard Tour page!

Yard A

Tucked into the St Johns neighborhood, this yard features a lot and a half of naturescaping, outdoor entertainment areas, and food production. The front yard features street trees planted with Friends of Trees and a shady native garden under a large fruit tree. The backyard, once covered with blackberry brambles, now features a huge Pacific ninebark, Oregon grape, dogwood, and espaliered apple trees. View the Yard A plant list.

Yard B

In the heart of the Alberta neighborhood, this yard features two established rain gardens, curved garden beds for edibles, and lots of native trees and shrubs for wildlife habitat and privacy from neighbors. The side yard features osoberry, oceanspray, and vine maple to create a visual barrier from neighbors and habitat for the resident flickers. View the Yard B plant list.

Yard C

Visitors wanting to experience the immense beauty of a well-established naturescaping will be mesmerized by this yard. Visitors will pass through a beautiful hand-built fence and into another world. While moving along a boardwalk, visitors will pass a bog pond, creek, waterfall, tree house, and an incredible display of native groundcovers and shrubs. The backyard features a huge cedar tree and a seating area for backyard fires and bbqs, and provides food and habitat for hummingbirds, pollinators, and even Cooper’s hawks! View the Yard C plant list.

Yard D

Childswork Learning Center is a non-profit school providing early childhood education to children ages 3-6. With the help of an EMSWCD grant and in partnership with several organizations and non-profits, Childswork transformed a sprawling patch of asphalt into a beautiful, interactive nature playscape that they call “Salmon Creek”. The area features a tree snag, an interactive water feature that spills into a rock creek bed, and tree stumps and boulders for climbing. The yard exposes children to nature and the environment, allowing them to learn through the open-ended opportunities for wonder, discovery and play that nature provides. View the Yard D plant list.

Yard E

Visitors to this yard will find an oversized urban lot that thoughtfully demonstrates the benefits of the right plant, right place concept. Walking along winding grass pathways, visitors will see a variety of beautifully designed plant communities. There are two established rain gardens, each featuring gorgeous mature native shrubs. The back corner of the yard features a three-section compost system and plant beds that she uses for edibles and for native plant propagation. View the Yard E plant List.

Yard F

Bridgeport United Church of Christ is a wonderful example of how to take advantage of every naturescaping opportunity a site has to offer. The Church partners with EMSWCD as both a grantee and as a workshop site host. Visitors will see pervious pavement in the bike parking area, an entryway green roof, and several raised garden beds for food production along the parking strips. View the Yard F plant list.

Yard G

This yard demonstrates the beauty of combining art with naturescaping. The front yard features large red flowering currants, native ground covers, espaliered pear trees, and even an insect hotel to house native pollinators. The parking strips have been converted to berry patches, featuring native salmonberries and thimbleberries. The backyard features a trench drain with floral cover that leads storm water from the downspout, across a pathway, and into an established rain garden that buzzes with pollinators and hummingbirds. Throughout the garden, visitors will find thoughtfully placed pieces of art that highlight color and nature. View the Yard G plant list.

Yard H

Located in SE Portland’s Powellhurst Gilbert neighborhood, this yard is a beautiful naturescape brimming with color and wildlife. Visitors can walk along two pathways in the front yard to see a variety of native shrubs and ornamental bulbs. The backyard features chickens, raised garden beds, a berry patch along fence, bee hive, and a tiki hut for hosting fun summer nights with friends. View the Yard H plant list.

Yard I

Residing in the Camelot neighborhood in Gresham, this yard features two impressive rain gardens. Visitors will see the growth stages of the both rain gardens. The backyard features a stand of large Douglas fir trees that create a dry, shaded habitat that is perfect for a variety of native flowers and groundcovers including trillium and ferns. View the Yard I plant list.