Anna, their German shepherd, is also part of the organic plan: deer never come around to munch on plants when she roams the property. Planting masses of daffodils, which deer and squirrels steer clear of, is also a simple solution, as is using niger (a type of thistle) seed in the finch feeders—unpalatable to these unintended diners.
Sally's bond with this property is evident not only in her respect for its natural beauty, but also in her focus and determination as its steward. A storm last fall, for instance, created havoc, with fallen trees and debris strewn across the property. "I hired five people and we worked from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. for three weeks to clear it up. Everything just goes by the board during these times and my friends wonder where I am. I feel badly about that, but I love the land and love working it."
• Lady's Mantle (Alchemilla mollis)
• Hay-Scented Fern ( Dennstaedtia punctiloba)
• Sneezeweed ( Helenium autumnale)
• Ox-Eye Daisy ( Leucanthemum vulgare syn. Chrysanthemum leucanthemum)
• Canada Mayflower ( Maianthemum canadense)
• Black-eyed Susan ( Rudbeckia spp.)
• Cutleaf Stephanandra ( Stephanandra incisa 'Crispa')
• Starflower ( Trientalis borealis )
Five for fighting:
Here are a few more plants that help control erosion, as recommended by Canadian Gardening's horticultural editor, Anne Marie Van Nest.
• Downy Serviceberry (Amelanchier arborea), Zone 4
• Red Osier Dogwood (Cornus sericea), Zone 2
• Daylilies (Hemerocallis spp.), Zone 3
• Kentucky Bluegrass (Poa pratensis), Zone 3
• Smooth Sumac (Rhus glabra), Zone 3