Native Gardening Guide for Dunes Communities

Download the Living in the Dunes Landscaping Guide Here! 



Native witchhazel which could be a great replacement for burning bush

We all love our dunes here in Northwest Indiana. Some of us are lucky enough to live in the beach communities that have been established in the dunes. Everyday, members of the dunes communities are surrounded by the drama and diversity of the dunes ecosystem. All of the Indiana Dunes park land and other preserves are encroached upon by seemingly innocuous garden plants that can transform the natural landscape. Invasive plants make the landscape unrecognizable and unable to perform ecosystem services for native plants, birds and butterflies.


Native Butterfly Weed. This flower looks beautiful and supports Queen and Monarch butterflies in addition to birds and bees.

We can do our part to reduce the impact our gardens have on the surrounding dunes. It can be a difficult and intimidating process to start native gardening, especially with our incredibly unique ecology. Here at Save the Dunes we are approached by the public about how they can change their habits to protect the dunes from invasive plants. To help fill this need we are creating a  guide just for Indiana Dunes beach communities to take the guess work out of where to start.

We have been developing the guide with the help of our advisory committee which is made up of residents of dunes communities, local experts and other stakeholders. Thank you to our members for sharing their thoughts and making this guide great. To see a full list of members, click here.

Save the Dunes was awarded a competitive grant by the Indiana Lake Michigan Coastal Program to produce this Guide. Generous supporting funds for this project have also been awarded to us from ArcelorMittal, the Lake County Community Fund at Legacy Foundation, and the Donnelley Foundation. We greatly appreciate all our funders for helping us to create this valuable resource.

Thank you to all of our partners.




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