BayScape Native Plant Garden at Wilna House


BayScaping is a system of landscape principles designed to help the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries. BayScape plants require little maintenance, water or fertilizer; grow in difficult conditions; and benefit wildlife. These ideas and practices are also called conservation or beneficial landscaping and xeriscaping.

BayScaping provides habitat for local and migratory animals, conserves native plants and improves water quality. Landowners also benefit, as this type of landscaping reduces the time and expense of mowing, watering, fertilizing and treating lawn and garden areas, and offers greater visual interest than lawn. Beneficial landscaping can also be used to address areas with problems such as erosion, poor soils, steep slopes, or poor drainage.

This garden was planned and installed by the Rappahannock Wildlife Refuge Friends to demonstrate the use of native plants in landscaping. Native plants have evolved in and are adapted to local soils and climate conditions. They generally require less watering and fertilizing than non-native plants. Acquired resistance to insects and disease means they are less likely to need pesticides. Regional wildlife uses native plant communities for food, cover and rearing young. Using native plants helps preserve the balance and beauty of natural ecosystems.

The garden was a joint venture by the Eastern Virginia Rivers NWR Complex and the Rappahannock Wildlife Refuge Friends with assistance from the Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay under a grant from National Fish and Wildlife Foundation Chesapeake Bay Small Watershed Grants Program.

Generous support was provided by:

  • Hyla Brook Farms
  • Ingleside Plantation Nurseries
  • Wood Preservers
  • Northern Neck Chapter of the Virginia Native Plant Society

Download the BayScape Native Plant Garden Brochure (pdf 1.2MB)