Domain: Gardening: Green, With Envy

Turn your yard into a natural nesting place

There’s something we love about the idea of making a yard into a “Recognized Audubon Bird Habitat.” It could be that Audubon himself, our country’s best-loved naturalist, was a local. Or it could be the handsome metal sign Audubon Pennsylvania sends once you attain recognition. But most likely, it’s the overall eco-coolness of the status itself, which means your very own great outdoors meets a handful of quite reasonable requirements. Your yard must not rely on toxic pesticides, fertilizers or chemicals. It must include 25 percent native trees and shrubs, a water source, nesting sites, and bird cover and food. It must be low-maintenance and kid- and pet-safe. Do that, then send a $25 donation to Audubon Pennsylvania—and you’re in like finch. The real reward, however, is what will happen in winter, when cardinals, jays and other holiday guests flock in. Apply online at