Lake-Friendly Landscaping for Lake Linganore

Guidance for landscaping in rocky soil and on steep slopes with lots of water running off the land

Make a plan

Think about the style or design that suits you and your yard. For instance, in wooded, rugged yards, a naturalized approach will probably work better than a more manicured or cultivated style. For ideas, start with this booklet, A Guide to Healthy Lakes Using Lakeshore Landscaping, that contains design templates and plant material for lake communities.

If you want some advice to get started, contact Friends of the Lake at  A volunteer will help you understand the challenges of your lot and elements that might make sense when planning a landscape. We can discuss with you any of the suggestions and resources on this web page to point you in the right direction.

Return forest to your yard

Consult our web page on Returning Forests to Your Yard for complete guidance on how and where to find trees to reforest your yard. Adding trees may be the first and easiest step to landscaping your property.

Remove invasive plants

Invasive plants are those that are not native to our area and crowd out native plants by rapidly growing and spreading.  They tend to be extremely hard to control. Maryland law restricts or bans the use of some invasive plants. The offenders should be labeled accordingly at nurseries.

For more information about the Maryland law and banned or restricted invasive plants, see Maryland Invasive Plants Prevention and Control.

Tip: pull invasive vines off your trees as they will kill and topple trees over time

Here are some of the invasives to avoid:


Ground spreaders




For more information, see Invasive Plants from the University of Maryland Extension, Home & Garden Information Center.

Plant native plants

Native plants are hardier and adapt better to the tough conditions here in Lake Linganore.

According to the National Association of REALTORS®, planting native species can improve the curb appeal of a home and boost its resale value. See Redefining Curb Appeal for more information.

Tip: there are native alternatives to all the invasive plants

Refer to Tried and True Native Plant Selections for the Mid-Atlantic for ideas on which native plants are good replacements for specific invasive.

See the Plants page of Maryland at a Glance for a list of native trees and invasive trees.

Local sources for natives include:

  • Stadler’s Nurseries
  • R. Snell Nursery
  • The Dutch Plant Farm

Build steps, patios, walls, and other infrastructure that allow water to infiltrate

Hard surfaces that do not allow water to filtrate act like a water slide. These surfaces are often referred to as impermeable. They don’t allow water to stay in your yard for your own plants and they send polluted runoff into our streams and lakes.

Reduce the amount of grass and replace it with other plant material

Replacing grass with trees, shrubs, flower beds, and vegetable gardens means you have less to mow and more visual variety to enjoy in your view.

See Alternatives to Lawn from the University of Maryland Extension, Home & Garden Information Center for more information.

For the grass areas that remain on your property, cut grass 2 inches or higher and limit fertilize use to the spring. Be sure to follow instructions carefully.

Observe no-mow rules if you are on a lake. No-mow means you mow up to the lake edge only once a year in late March.

Get rewards for your efforts by participating in the LLA Waterside Buffer Rebate Program

The Waterside Buffer rebate program rewards home owners up to $600 by following best lake-saving practices for your landscaping efforts.

Create a haven for birds, butterflies, bees and other good insects

Creating healthy gardens for our pollinators such as birds, butterflies, and bees also provides a healthy environment for people by reducing pesticides and insecticides in our gardening. Pollinators are vital for food production. Having them in your yard is a great way to help children understand the wonders of the natural world.

For more information, see Gardening for Pollinators.

The types of yards that attract pollinators are also good for protecting water quality in our lakes. See the Bay-Wise Maryland Yardstick for more information.

Keep up with maintenance: weeding, mulching and watering

Keep your garden design simple enough to manage and maintain.  Once weeds spread, it’s hard to stop them.

Avoid spraying the herbicide, Glyphosate, also known as Roundup. If you must use it, it’s best to apply it in a targeted way by using a brush to paint it on individual plants. Glyphonate can damage aquatic wildlife and is believed to reduce butterfly and bee populations.

Limit the varieties of plant material in the beginning to see what survives and thrives. Be sure to water new plants regularly until they are established, especially during droughts. If you do not, you will lose your investment.

Install a rain barrel so that you have a source of water during times of drought. For more information, see Soak Up the Rain: Rain Barrels.
In Frederick, rain barrels can be purchased at home and garden centers and the Scott Key Center.

Please remember, before undertaking your landscape project, you must apply to the HOA for approval.