American's yards are the fastest-growing ecosystem in North America. Happily, there is growing interest in landscaping with native and drought-tolerant plants. The grounds at the Jim Hall Foothills Learning Center provide a public place to see the beauty of a waterwise and firewise native landscape.
The grounds are landscaped with native and drought-tolerant plants, including native grasses and wildflowers that replaced a water-thirsty lawn. Firewise features include proper plant placement around the building, breaks in the vegetation,and using footpaths as fire breaks, thus reducing wildfire risk. Hardscape was kept to a minimum by finishing patios and paths with permeable decomposed granite.
A native plant garden features southwest Idaho native plants, interpretative signs about the plants and their use in YOUR landscape.
The grounds were landscaped in phases. The first phase included contouring the parking lot, building a butterfly garden, and installing swales to capture stormwater runoff. Phase Two included building an outdoor amphitheater and creating paths and patios using decomposed granite that allows water to flow through. In addition, public art installations are located throughout the garden.