Stroll through many sprawling community associations and you’re likely to see close-cropped lawns, beefy hedges, parkway tree canopies and shimmering ponds. The landscape may be beautiful, but it’s expensive to keep up, and probably not very Earth-friendly.
Some associations are turning to sustainable landscaping, an emerging trend in landscape management.

Sustainable landscaping is a set of practices that save money, reduce energy usage, preserve natural resources and create a healthier environment for residents and wildlife, said Tom Lupfer, president of Lupfer Landscaping in Lyons.

"It’s a new way of looking at how we manage our properties to create healthy, regenerative ecosystems that are economically viable," he said.

Some people erroneously believe that sustainable landscaping means tallgrass prairies and fields of wildflowers, he said.

"It’s not a design style," Lupfer said. "You can have as formal or informal an appearance as you want," he told the Chicago Tribune recently. To read the article in the Tribune, click here.