The Extreme Green Makeover was a City of Maplewood campaign in 2010 to promote GREEN Landscaping in our neighborhoods. Developed by Maplewood Nature Center staff, a series of programs and events were offered to the public that highlighted sustainable landscaping principles:
Green design - Create aesthetically pleasing landscapes that meet the needs of residents and benefit the environment.
Rain water - Put rain water to use in the yard.
Energy landscaping - Reduce heating and cooling costs with plants.
Effective resource use -Minimize the use of water, fertilizers, and pesticides.
Native plants - Plant natives to enhance habitat for wildlife.
Partners for the EGM included the Ramsey-Washington Metro Watershed District, Maplewood branch of the Ramsey County Public Library, and Linders Garden Center.
Extreme Green Makeover Winning Property
The EGM highlight was a $15,000 green makeover contest for a Maplewood resident’s front yard. The winning property, 2211 Ariel Street (near County Road B and White Bear Avenue) features a trench drain that captures water from the driveway, rain gardens with native plants, and a garden near the house that filters water from the roof. These stormwater management installations can be viewed from the street. Please do not walk onto the private property.
In the re-design of the front yard, the lawn was reduced by half, decreasing the need for fertilizer. Now, virtually all rain that falls on this front yard is captured and infiltrated by the rain gardens. The long-rooted native plants in the rain gardens take up excess water and nutrients and they provide habitat for birds, butterflies, and other pollinators.