Saturday, October 23, 2021

GardenDC Podcast Episode 80: Bay-Wise Landscapes

In this episode, we talk with Wanda MacLachlan, Area Educator, Residential Landscape Management, University of Maryland Extension, about the Bay-Wise Landscape Program. The plant profile is on White Wood Aster and I share what's going on locally and in my garden.


·  00:45 Meet Wanda MacLachlan!

·  02:55 “I’ll study plants instead…” — Wanda, after having to dissect an earthworm in college 

·  06:50 Learn all about the Chesapeake Bay! Did you know it reaches all the way to Upstate New York?

·  08:15 … Or that the Bay is the largest estuary, which is a body of water where fresh and saltwater mix, in the United States?

·  08:49 90% of the Bay’s freshwater comes from five major rivers: Susquehanna (NY), Potomac (MD), Rappahannock, York and James (VA) rivers

·  11:00 The Bay is home to more than 500 finfish and shellfish species and 29 species of waterfowl, and the watershed home to 2,700 plant species … So, yeah, it’s pretty important! 

·  11:49 “So many ways it touches our lives” — Kathy

·  12:19 18 million people live within the Bay’s Watershed… “If you are one of those 18 million people … then the Bay actually starts at your back door” — Wanda

·  13:33 What does rain wash into the Bay? Fertilizers used in gardens, pesticides, road salts during winter time, oil and antifreeze from cars… and more.

·  15:44 Why exactly is “excess nutrients” a bad thing for our Bay? 

·  17:50 The “Dead Zones” of the Bay are called such because of excess nutrients: They aren’t getting enough oxygen!

·  20:10 The Maryland Yardstick Program: Visit to learn about it and how you can apply.

·  24:11 If you plant ground covers under trees, you already have a box you can check.

·  29:00 But if you plant invasive species... “Oh boy,” Wanda said. Don’t be surprised if you lose a point or two! 

·  35:50 This November, Bay-Wise is celebrating their 25th anniversary.

·  41:40 From day one, Bay-Wise has certified 3,329 landscapes.

·  43:30 “You don't have to have your landscape certified, but I would encourage people to … look at that yardstick and just use it as a guide to what you can be doing in your landscape that” - Wanda

·  44:35 “I'm definitely going to go through that checklist myself… I have like 3 other certifications, but now I need that Bay-Wise one” — Kathy

·  45:00 You can contact Wanda at or (410) 531-5973 with any questions.

·  46:05 “The daisy-like blooms are a pollinator favorite” — Learn about this week’s plant profile, the White Wood Aster.

·  47:40 Community garden update: Kathy has harvested her container-grown peanuts, and can’t wait to roast and taste them!

·  48:30 Home garden update on prepping for next year’s spring display and her newfound love for alliums!

·  49:00 Upcoming events: Giving a talk for Brookside Gardens, Master Gardeners of Northern VA composing sessions, U.S. Botanic Garden workshops, and “Pumpkin Painting” at Green Spring Gardens

BTW, YOU can become a listener supporter for as little as $0.99 per month! See how at:

The episode is posted at:

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We welcome your questions and comments! You can leave a voice mail message for us at: Note that we may use these messages on a future episode.

Episode Credits
Host and Producer: Kathy Jentz
Interview Edits: Charlotte Crook
Notes: Melena DiNenna


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