Our History

In Summer 2003, representatives of non-profit organizations, businesses, governmental agencies, and committed individuals from throughout the Chesapeake Bay watershed convened at a summit in Annapolis, Maryland. The participants had in common a dedication to the principles of conservation landscaping, and a desire to see it become more widely used in the Chesapeake Bay region. As a result of that summit meeting, the Chesapeake Conservation Landscaping Council was formed.

CCLC Timeline

2002-2003 – Representatives from Adkins Arboretum, Chesapeake Bay Trust, Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service/Chesapeake Bay Field Office, and other organizations discuss forming an organization of like-minded individuals that would promote conservation landscaping to landscape professionals, homeowners, and the business community in the Chesapeake Bay watershed.

July 2003 – A Conservation Landscaping Summit is held at the Chesapeake Bay Foundation to formally create the CCLC and discuss the mission and goals of the organization. Adkins Arboretum staff become the first chairs of the CCLC. Committee work begins in Fall 2003.

2004 – Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay chairs the CCLC. Committees work to gather data on the ecological and economic value of Conservation Landscaping, to promote the CCLC and Conservation Landscaping, and to write CL Guidelines.

2005 – Adkins Arboretum takes over the chairmanship of CCLC from the Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay. A memorandum of understanding is signed, giving Adkins Arboretum oversight of the financial affairs of CCLC. This arrangement is to remain in effect until CCLC obtains independent nonprofit status.

February 2, 2005 – A Steering Committee retreat is held at the Patuxent Wildlife Research Center in Laurel, Maryland, to review accomplishments to date, refocus on CCLC’s goal, and develop a list of activities for 2005 and beyond. A logo is selected from a number of ideas submitted; the final version is created by a designer contracted by Adkins Arboretum.

May 2005 – Britt Slattery completes a chapter written by the Standards Committee for the Certified Professional Horticulturist Training Manual of the Maryland Nursery and Landscape Association.

Nov. 2, 2005 – Fall Lecture held at the Chesapeake Bay Foundation: “Conservation by Design” is presented by Dr. Russell Brinsfield, Mayor of Vienna, MD and head of the University of Maryland Agro-Ecology Center.

2006 – CCLC brochure, web site, and pull-up display are created.

November 2006 – First “Turning a New Leaf” Conference held at the Cedar Lane Unitarian Church, Bethesda, MD, with 193 participants (203 registered). The list and summary of the elements/ concepts of conservation landscaping are distributed.

November 2007 – Completion of Draft Conservation Landscaping Guidelines: The Eight Essential Elements of Conservation Landscaping.

November 2007 – Second “Turning a New Leaf” Conference held at the Ernst Cultural Center at the Northern Virginia Community College, Annandale, VA. 274 participants.

February 12, 2008 – A second Steering Committee retreat is held at Meadowlark Gardens in Vienna, VA to review progress and develop goals for sustainability. Deciding to pursue nonprofit status; the Steering Committee makes a transition to a Founding Board of Directors.

May 2008 – Demonstration Rain Garden installed by CCLC at the U.S. Botanic Gardens (USBG), Washington, DC as part of the “One Planet – Ours!” summer exhibition.

May 2008 – Conservation Landscaping Contest opens.

August 2008 – Presentation by CCLC speakers Marcy Damon and Zora Lathan at the US Botanic Garden

September 2008 – Field Days, with tours of sites with conservation landscaping practices, held in Annapolis, Maryland (44 participants) and Northern Virginia (42 participants.)

November 2008 – Conservation Landscaping Contest winners announced.

November 2009 – 501(c)3 nonprofit status approved.

December 4, 2009 – Third “Turning a New Leaf” Conference held at George Washington University, Washington, DC. Conference co-sponsored by the George Washington University Landscape Design School. 258 participants.

March 23, 2009 – Founding Board retreat held at Chesapeake Bay Foundation in Annapolis Maryland. Focus on developing sustainability for CCLC and program development.

June 1, 2010 – Second Conservation Landscaping Contest opens.

August 2010 – Field Day tour of sites with conservation landscaping practices, held in Williamsburg, Viriginia area (26 participants).

November 2010 – CCLC leads a conservation landscaping workshop at Chesapeake Watershed Forum in Shepherdstown, WV. Revised and updated version of Conservation Landscaping Guidelines: The Eight Essential Elements of Conservation Landscaping is presented at the workshop.

November 15, 2010 – Conservation Landscaping Contest winners announced.

April 29, 2011 – Field day tour of sites with conservation landscaping practices held in Baltimore, MD (29 participants).

December 2, 2011 – Fourth “Turning a New Leaf” conference held in Lancaster, PA (238 participants).

October 10, 2012 – Field day tour of sites with conservation landscaping practices held in Washington, DC (26 participants).

May 19, 2013 – Rainscaping garden tour, Annapolis, MD.

June 29, 2013 – Field Day tour of sites with conservation landscaping practices held in central Viriginia.

August 23, 2013 – Field Day tour of sites with conservation landscaping practices held in York County, PA (42 participants).

November 2013 – First Marcy Damon Conservation Landscaping Award presented to founding Board member and Environmental Educator Britt Slattery.

November 15, 2013 – Celebration of CCLC’s 10th Anniversary in Shepherdstown, WV.

November 16, 2013 – Fifth “Turning a New Leaf” conference held in Shepherdstown, WV (206 participants).

December 2013 – Revised and updated version of Conservation Landscaping Guidelines: The Eight Essential Elements of Conservation Landscaping made available as a printed document for purchase online.

June 1, 2014 – RainScaping Garden Tour, Severna Park, Maryland (18  participants).

July 2014 – Board Retreat and Strategic Planning Session at Wye Research and Education Center, Queenstown, MD.

August 21, 2015 – Field Day tour of sites with conservation landscaping practices held in PA.

November 2015 – Marcy Damon Conservation Landscaping Award presented to conservation landscaper and environmental educator Ellie Altmann.

November 12-13, 2015 – Sixth “Turning a New Leaf” Conference held in Towson, MD (281 participants).