Bay Friendly Yard Program

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Plant Bay Friendly!

Long Island invented the suburban lawn. It’s time to reinvent it. Let’s plant natives, let’s bring them back. They require no fertilizer or pesticides, no extra water. They are more beautiful, are less expensive to maintain, and they help restore habitat. They also help filter our groundwater before it reaches the bay and our water supply.

Certify Your Yard Bay Friendly

Do you practice sustainable gardening methods?

  • Habitat Restoration
  • Stormwater Management
  • Local Stewardship

Become a Certified Bay Friendly Yard and proudly display a yard sign.

Apply Now or email us [email protected] for more info!

Get A Free, Native Planting, E-Book To Help You Get Started!

  • Step-by-step instructions to assess your yard
  • Lists of LI native species
  • Tips on how to arrange these plantings

Bay Friendly Yard Webinars

Bay Friendly Yards: Ocean Beach

Director of Habitat Restoration Frank Piccininni addresses the Village of Ocean Beach Civic Association on how to create Bay Friendly Yards in the Fire Island community.

Bay Friendly Yards: Recycling Stormwater

Stormwater runoff accounts for a large percentage of nitrogen in our local waterways which in turn triggers harmful brown tides in the Great South Bay. Managing stormwater runoff is not only one of the three essential elements of a Bay Friendly Yard but crucial to protecting the Bay.

Bay Friendly Yards: Creating A Butterfly Garden

Butterflies are not only beautiful to observe but also serve an important role in our local ecosystem. Planting an area in your yard as a butterfly garden restores native habitat whilst creating a landing pad for butterflies and other essential pollinators!

Bay Friendly Yards: Nature and Mindfulness

The chirping of birds, the metamorphic wonder of butterflies – a nature encounter in your own yard. Learn about the mental health benefits of a Bay Friendly Yard and a healthy ecosystem presented by Kristen Perret, PhD on behalf of local environmental non-profit Save The Great South Bay. The

Bay Friendly Yards: Creating Wildlife Habitat

The typical suburban yard lacks the basic necessities of wildlife habitat. Learn how to bring your yard to life by creating a Bay Friendly Yard that is also a place for wildlife to call home, during our webinar on Saturday, May 15th at 10:00 AM via Zoom with Frank Piccininni, Director of Habitat

Bay Friendly Yards: Three Essential Elements

The typical suburban lawn relies heavily on fertilizers, pesticides, and huge amounts of water. It’s polluting, expensive, lifeless and tired. Bay Friendly Yards are beautiful, full of life, less expensive to maintain, and (bonus!) help filter groundwater before it hits a creek or the Bay.

More About Bay Friendly Yards

Bay Friendly Yard Tip #7: Addition by Subtraction

Bay Friendly Yard Tip #7: Addition by Subtraction

Invasive plants are taking over Long Island. Not only do they not support local wildlife, but they also “choke out” our necessary native flora. As invasive species are allowed to spread, our biodiversity takes a toll. Climbing plants such as wisteria and English ivy...

How to Build a Better Rain Garden

How to Build a Better Rain Garden

It is common knowledge that nitrogen is public enemy #1 when it comes to the Great South Bay. Stormwater runoff is a source of nitrogen pollution. As part of Save The Great South Bay's Bay Friendly Yards initiative, we welcome guest blogger Rachel Perez who reveals...

Bay Friendly Yard Tip #3

Bay Friendly Yard Tip #3

Bay Friendly Yard Tip #3 Tree Type Matters Choose trees that are hosts to the largest number of native species. Here's our fave 5!   "Not all trees are created equal," says Frank Piccininni, Director of Habitat Restoration at Save The...

Bay Friendly Yard Tip #2

Bay Friendly Yard Tip #2

Bay Friendly Yard Tip #2 is to plant trees in clusters. The roots graft making them more storm-resistant. Trees are also stronger in groups. Cluster planting helps limit canopy size making them less vulnerable to winds. "Like people, trees need friends", says Frank...

Bay Friendly Yard Tip #1

Bay Friendly Yard Tip #1

Having a Bay Friendly Yard is one way you can help save the Great South Bay. Start by "leaving the leaves", says Frank Piccininni, Director of Habitat Restoration at Save The Great South Bay. Here are a few reasons to leave your rake in the shed: Leaves benefit...

Bay Friendly Yards: Creating Wildlife Habitat

Bay Friendly Yards: Creating Wildlife Habitat

The typical suburban yard lacks the basic necessities of wildlife habitat, devoid of birds, butterflies and other delightful creatures. These creatures are not only an essential part of local ecosystems but also provide an amazing nature show! What does a butterfly...