Green Spot

Resource Guide


  1. Keeping Rats out of your Compost- In general, rats are looking for two basic things: food and shelter. In some cases, a compost pile ends up being both, and you can end up with a rat problem. Thankfully, with proper composting techniques and rodent proofing, there are several simple ways to both prevent rats from getting into your compost pile. Below are some helpful tips for keeping the pesky rodents away from your compost.
  2. Commercial composting facilities: Yard waste can be disposed of in several ways locally. The easiest way is to contact the community in which you live and find out the procedures for curbside yard waste disposal. However residents of Franklin County and pre-approved areas can take their yard waste to multiple locations throughout Franklin County.
  3. City Folk's Farm Shop: Created to connect city-dwellers to goods, services, information and other people who are interested in city farming.

Invasive Species

  1. Ohio Department of Natural Resources: Mission Statement: To ensure a balance between wise use and protection of our natural resources for the benefit of all.
  2. Ohio Invasive Plants Council: The Ohio Invasive Plants Council is a coalition of agencies, organizations, and individuals throughout Ohio concerned about the introduction, spread, and control of invasive, non-native plants in Ohio's natural habitats
  3. Midwest Invasive Plants Network: Mission Statement: Our mission is to reduce the impact of invasive plant species in the Midwest.

We refer to the Ohio Invasive Plants Council (OIPC), the Ohio Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP), the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR), and the Midwest Invasive Plants Council (MIPC) for plants not eligible for reimbursement. For a comprehensive reference list or more information, please contact us directly.

Native Plants & Trees

Many of the following websites have or will generate native plant lists.
  1. Plant Native: PlantNative is dedicated to moving native plants and naturescaping into mainstream landscaping practices.
  2. Wild Ones: Wild Ones strives to become a widely recognized voice for native plants and the sustainable landscaping movement, promoting increased use of native plantings that create living landscapes through grassroots efforts by example, education, marketing, and personalized support. Wild Ones has several local chapters: see Columbus, Ohio chapter
  3. Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center: The mission of the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center is to increase the sustainable use and conservation of native wildflowers, plants and landscapes.
  4. Ohio Department of Natural Resources: Go Native- ODNR's mission statement is to ensure a balance between wise use and protection of our natural resources for the benefit of all.
  5. Midwest Native Plant Society: A non-profit organization of amateur and professional naturalists, botanists, teachers, researchers, gardeners, birders, photographers and others who share a deep appreciate for our native flora and fauna.
See more native plant resources in documents below.

Do you qualify for the $100 tree rebate? Select the right tree from the approved Branch Out Columbus tree list.

Rain Barrels

  1. Rain Barrel Installation- Watch this installation tutorial video from the makers of the EarthMinded RainStation.

Rain Gardens

  1. Central Ohio Rain Garden Initiative: The Central Ohio Rain Garden Initiative (CORGI) is a collaborative effort to promote the benefits of rain gardens for community beautification and clean water. CORGI can provide you with education and technical assistance to help with rain garden assessment, design, and planting plans. Assistance is available for residents, community organizations, municipalities, and businesses.

Soil Testing

  1. Soil Testing Available at Franklin Co. Extension Office: Testing available for gardens, home lawns, farm fields, and commercial horticulture operations at $11/sample. Call 613-866-6900 for more information.

Stormwater Pollution

  1. PUP Campaign (Pick Up Poop): A City of Columbus program, “PUP” stands for Pick Up Poop. All dog owners can "doo" the right thing and scoop poop when walking and in your own backyard. Our goal is clean water and PUPing is our law.
  2. EPA's "After the Storm": Information for the homeowner or municipal employee on stormwater runoff and solutions.
  3. Blueprint Columbus: Neighborhood projects will focus on relining sanitary pipes and green infrastructure to prevent the infiltration of stormwater, a major cause of sewer overflows.

Sustaining Wildlife

  1. Native Plants and Wildlife Gardens: A network of sites created by conservation biologist Carole Sevilla Brown.
  2. National Wildlife Federation: National Wildlife Federation is a voice for wildlife, dedicated to protecting wildlife and habitat and inspiring the future generation of conservationists. 
  3. Audubon Ohio Chapter: The mission of Audubon Ohio is to conserve and restore natural ecosystems, focusing on birds, other wildlife, and their habitats in Ohio by promoting conservation and biodiversity through education and advocacy
  4. Bringing Nature Home- Doug Tallamy: Why should you consider planting native?
  5. Native Plants and Ecosystem Services- Michigan State University: Natives help attract beneficial insects to your garden.

Related Documents

file type
Ohio Department of Natural Resources, Division of Natural Areas & Preserves
Ohio’s Most Invasive Plants: This brochure describes 10 of the most invasive non-native plant species in Ohio with information about their appearance, habitat, possible controls, and native species which can be used as alternatives in garden or wildlife plantings.

file type
Gardening for Life by Doug Tallamy
"Chances are, you have never thought of your garden - indeed, of all of the space on your land - as a wildlife preserve that represents the last chance we have for sustaining plants and animals that were once common throughout the United States."

file type
Franklin Co. Stormwater Drainage Manual- Native Plants for Best Management Practices
Features a comprehensive list of Ohio-natives, including those commonly used for stormwater applications