Natural Resources

Learn about City of Naperville programs, services, projects and resources that help preserve and protect our natural resources.

Healthy Yards and Healthy Communities

The actions we take to maintain our yards can have direct consequences for the health of our community and our rivers. These ideas and resources can help achieve a beautiful yard while also caring for the environment.

  • Plant a tree. Each year, the City hosts an Arbor Day Tree Sale, in which residents can choose from a number of container-grown species including maples, oaks and elms for use in beautifying their yards and sustaining the environment.
  • Replace turf grass with native and deep-rooted plants.
  • Collect rainwater in a rain barrel. Order your own rain barrel for pickup at The Conservation Foundation's McDonald Farm or home delivery. You can also place an order to pick up your rain barrel during the Arbor Day Tree Sale.
  • Use smart technology to water your lawn and garden only when it needs it. Learn how irrigation controllers can help you water more efficiently.
  • Consider installing a native planting pollinator garden.
    Purple coneflowers grow freely in garden beds in a yard.
  • Create a Monarch Waystation

A Beautiful Yard Without Pesticides

Studies show that use of lawn chemicals can have environmental ramifications, especially for children. These chemicals potentially can contaminate surface and groundwater, affect outdoor and indoor air quality, and threaten the health of pets and wildlife. Alternative approaches include:

  • Leave grass clippings on the lawn to act as a natural fertilizer.
  • Overseed to fill in existing bare spots in the late summer or early fall. This approach will prevent weeds from taking over these spaces in the spring.
  • Aerate your soil to facilitate healthy grass growth.
  • Keep your mower blade setting at least 2-3 inches tall to allow your grass to developer deeper, more drought-resistant roots.

Go native with Conservation@Home

Have you considered using native plants in your landscaping?

Conservation@Home sign in front of a native garden with pink and yellow flowers

 The Conservation Foundation’s Conservation@Home program offers free advice and ideas to help eliminate chemical use, incorporate earth-friendly landscaping and create native gardens.

Great news for Naperville residents: the City will cover the cost of on-site consultations and certification fees for 2024! This is a fantastic opportunity to create a more resilient ecosystem right in your backyard.

Here's how it works: an expert from The Conservation Foundation will visit your property and offer personalized advice on plants, maintenance practices, and design elements that boost biodiversity. If you meet the criteria, your property will earn a certification, and you'll receive a sign to showcase your eco-friendly status—perfect for raising awareness in your neighborhood.

Join the many homeowners who have incorporated native plants into their landscapes to create beautiful outdoor spaces, invite birds and butterflies to their yards, and reduce their use of water, fertilizers and pesticides. Get started with Conservation@Home today! 

No Mow May

By waiting to pull out their lawnmowers and refraining from the use of pesticides and herbicides, residents allow early flowering plants to grow, providing a critical food source for newly emerged pollinators and supporting the development of healthy urban ecosystems. 

Registered participants will be exempt from ordinances governing "weeds" and grass height for the month of May with the display of a printable No-Mow May participation sign, similar to a building permit. Registered participants will be exempt from ordinances governing "weeds" and grass height for the month of May with the display of a printable No-Mow May participation sign, similar to a building permit. The 2024 program is now closed to new registrations.

 Flyer thanking people for participating in no-mow May, with grass and orange and blue butterflies.

Compost and Yard Waste Services

City workers collect evergreen branches during the annual spring bulk brush collection.

Electric Lawn Equipment Rebate 

A battery-powered, yellow and gray electric lawn mower cutting a lawn.

This popular program, introduced in 2022, provides a $50 rebate to residents who purchase a battery-powered electric lawn mower, snow blower, leaf blower, trimmer, edger or manually powered reel lawn mower. All available funds have been allocated for 2024, and the program is now closed.