The Chihuahuan Desert Education Coalition (CDEC) has launched a new Certified Habitat program that encourages people to landscape their yards with native plants and help create more backyard habitats for local wildlife. Landscaping and planting native plants helps to attract birds, butterflies and other wildlife species. These mini habitats when connected with other natural areas in the neighborhood can make a real impact in helping birds needing trees for nesting and butterflies needing nectar from flowers. Backyard habitats landscaped with native plants from our local Chihuahuan Desert also help the community conserve drinking water.
The project includes a native plant demonstration landscape at Cleveland Square across from the Southwest University Park in downtown El Paso and a Channel 15 video. Interpretive graphics were designed by local artist Mitsu Overstreet with funding provided by the City of El Paso.
Examples of drought tolerant plants include desert willow, yellow bells, acacia, sotol, ocotillo, and wooly butterfly bush. To learn more and watch a new YouTube video on the project plants visit the CDEC website at www.chihuahuandesert.org.