Native Landscape Design Workshop at Menomonee Valley

Thursdays, April 7 - May 19, 2022

6:00 PM - 8:00 PM
Menomonee Valley

Event Description

(For adults) *Each week is "themed", so there is a description for each week of the workshop.  See below.

Week 1 (April 7) - Why Plant Natives?

Did you know that the majority of our beneficial native insects have co-evolved for thousands and millions of years to efficiently metabolize our native plants? Learn the many ecological benefits of native plants and why you should incorporate them into your yard. Increase the beauty and function of your yard. Every little habitat helps!

Week 2 (April 14) - Measuring and Drawing Your Existing Yard

During this session we will discuss how to properly measure the dimensions of your yard and take a site inventory of existing sidewalks, elevation and topography, turf grass space, trees, light conditions, et cetera.  Using this information we will create a base map upon which you will draw your landscape design and begin to identify the functional areas of your yard.  This session will involve hands-on outdoor and indoor classroom time.

Week 3 (April 21) – From Functional Concepts to Composition

After gaining an understanding for the physical inventory of your yard, the designing phase can begin.  We will brainstorm how we convert functional areas (ie: patio areas, perennial and/or vegetable gardens, et cetera) from conceptual to solidified form composition.  There will be individual work time during this session.    

Week 4 (April 28) – Design Principles

We will continue transforming our conceptual areas into paper and pencil composition. We will also describe the basic design principles, including: proportion and function of space; rhythm, balance and views; plant characteristics of color, texture, wildlife attraction, et cetera. 

Week 5 (May 5) - Preliminary Blueprint Creation Phase 1

Application of the principles to create a quality design will be explained.  You will then draw your own preliminary landscape design blueprint, applying the discussed concepts.  Majority of this session time will be for individual work time and questions.

Week 6 (May 12) – Preliminary Blueprint Creation Phase 2

During this session you will have the opportunity to continue working towards the completion of your preliminary landscape blueprint.  We will have open discussion for questions.  The UEC Land Stewards will be present for personal, hands-on support with any and all of your design questions.   

Week 7 (May 19) - Plant Selection for your Master Design Plan

Now that you’ve learned how to design and plan your landscape, we will discuss the importance of properly preparing your landscape for planting. We will also explore the factors for selecting plants and supplies needed to finish your landscape. You will learn how to read and use plant selection guides to help you choose which plants will do well in your site conditions. This session will involve discussion and individual work time.

For questions about this program, please reach out to our Washington Park Land Steward, Michaela Rosenthal, at

Registration is required and will close 24 hours prior to event start time.

Pick your price
Personal financial situations vary widely so we provide multiple pricing options to make our programs accessible. The highest listed price fully covers the cost of the program. Lower prices reflect the generosity of our supporters who help us ensure programs are available to everyone. Please choose the option that best fits you, your family and your guests.

Whatever price you pick, Members get 20% off!
If you are a member, be sure to sign in to your account above to have your discount automatically applied. If you haven’t created an account with our new system, be sure to create one using the email address associated with your membership. If you don’t know if your membership is current or aren’t sure what email address we have on file, please reach out to our Membership Manager, Glenna Holstein at To become a member, click here.

COVID Policy
At the Urban Ecology Center safety is our top priority. Our goal is to provide as safe an environment as possible for our communities. Click here to learn more about our procedures during the COVID-19 Pandemic.

Confirmation/Cancellation Policy:
If you sign up for a program and your plans change, we kindly request that you let us know at least 10 business days in advance so we have the opportunity to offer a program to others. We will provide refunds as follows: 10 business days or more: full refund, 5-9 business days: 50% refund, 0-4 business days: no refund.