May 12, 2014

LISLE, Ill. (May 12, 2014)— The Morton Arboretum has released a new handbook, “Retrofitting Large Landscapes for Sustainability,” offering industry professionals guidelines and ideas to help incorporate sustainable practices into landscape design. Developed for property managers, homeowner associations, school and park district boards and other stewards of large properties, the free manual highlights cost-effective ways to make landscapes easier to maintain, while reducing landscapes’ adverse impacts on the environment. In addition, the handbook addresses alternatives to chemical treatments as well as the importance of selecting plants to suit the given climate and conditions.

 “It’s really not difficult or cost-prohibitive to create a sustainable landscape, and this new manual provides the tools to get started,” said Beth Corrigan, Community Trees Program Coordinator at The Morton Arboretum. “Through easy-to-follow guidelines, we hope to help anyone who manages large landscapes to think more sustainably, whether the property is new, or has been in existence for decades.”

Topics covered in the handbook, available free at, include:


  • Landscaping around ponds to reduce erosion and goose problems
  • Choosing tree species that are pest-resistant and resilient
  • Reducing lawn area for lower mowing costs
  • Changing display plantings to perennials and native plants that require less upkeep
  • Enlisting residents’ and tenants’ support for sustainable landscaping changes


The handbook was developed by The Morton Arboretum’s Community Trees Program, in partnership with an advisory committee of property managers and associations, landscape architects and contractors. To download the free handbook, visit


About Community Trees
The Community Trees Program at The Morton Arboretum was established in 2002 with support from the Grace Bersted Foundation. The program’s goal is to help people help trees live long, productive lives, based on the philosophy that all trees, on both public and private land, together form an urban and community forest that is crucial to a community’s infrastructure. For more information on the Community Trees Program, e-mail


About The Morton Arboretum
The Morton Arboretum is an internationally recognized outdoor tree museum on 1,700 acres. Plant collections, scientific research and education programs support the mission to plant and conserve trees and other plants for a greener, healthier and more beautiful world. Designed with natural landscapes, the grounds include the award-winning, four-acre interactive Children’s Garden, the one-acre Maze Garden, plus specialty gardens, 16 miles of trails and nine miles of roads. Visitor experiences include the open-air tram ride, guided walks, Arbor Day celebrations, concerts, art shows, Fall Color Festival and special exhibits. The Arboretum welcomes 885,000 visitors annually and receives support from 38,600 member households.  Located 25 miles west of Chicago in Lisle, Illinois, the Arboretum is open daily 7 a.m. until sunset. Learn more at

Admission Rate
Nonmember admission rates to The Morton Arboretum are $12 for adults ages 18-64 ($8 on Wednesday), $11 for seniors ages 65 and over ($7 on Wednesday), $9 for children ages 2-17 ($6 on Wednesday) and free for children under age 2. Parking is free with admission. Members receive free general admission all year long.