Sustainable Gardens Series



Designing for Birds and Bees

Saturday, July 14, 2018, 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

Attract pollinators to your garden with native plants and sustainable gardening techniques. Bees and birds offer many benefits to both land and people, so why not create a space for them in your home garden? In this class, you will learn:

  • Basic principles of sustainability
  • How to assess your garden for sustainability
  • Sustainable soil-building, watering practices, and maintenance solutions
  • A list of native plants that attract birds and bees.
  • Design ideas on ways incorporate them into your garden.

End class with a visit to Schulenberg Prairie to see many of the recommended plants in action.


Designing with Reclaimed Materials

Saturday, August 18, 2018, 9:00 a.m. to noon

Add character and sustainability to your garden using repurposed materials. Instead of heading to the landfill, old bricks, wooden beams, metal sheeting, and more can find new life as design elements in your garden. Use them to create containers, borders, water features, and more. In this class, you will learn

  • how to  make informed decisions when selecting garden materials,
  • how to reuse materials in your own garden, with design ideas and practical tips,
  • how to share materials with others, and
  • how to identify the best local salvage and recycling centers for large scale garden and home recycling.


About Carol Becker
Carol Becker provides sustainable landscape designs and consulting services for clients in the Midwest.  She also writes a gardening column for homeowners and professionals in the industry, published by Lurvey Landscape Supply. Carol is a member of the Illinois Landscape Contractors Association (ILCA), the American Horticultural Society, Conserve Lake County, the Morton Arboretum and Go Green Park Ridge.
She holds a degree in Ornamental Horticulture and Landscape Design from Triton College and an M.A. in English Literature and Writing from Ohio State University. In 2012, she became a Certified Wildlife Landscape Professional with the National Wildlife Federation. In 2014 she received the Polaris Award from the Midwest Ecological Landscape Alliance (now part of ILCA), in recognition of her lifetime commitment to landscape sustainability, and she also completed her certification as a Landscape for Life™ teacher.

Instructor: Carol Becker, landscape designer, Sage Advice
Note: Held indoors. Limit 18

Course number


Schedule and Location

Saturday, July 14, 2018, 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., or Saturday, August 18, 2018, 9:00 a.m. to noon
Thonhill Education Center

  • Section A: Saturday, July 14, 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., Designing for Birds and Bees
  • Section B: Saturday, August 18, 9:00 a.m. to noon, Designing with Reclaimed Materials

Fees and Admission

Nonmembers: Fees include admission to the Arboretum. 

$39.00 member
$46.00 nonmember

Registration Information

ONLINE:  REGISTER NOW, opens new tab
BY PHONE: 630-719-2468 (or to be waitlisted, M-F, 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.)
IN PERSON: Stop by Visitor Center during open hours.


Weather Cancellation Hotline
Classes run rain or shine unless there is a threat of server weather. If severe weather is forecast please call 630-719-7979 for updates on weather related cancellations.