Bow Point Nursery

Bowpoint Overview

Since 1992, we at Bow Point Nursery have been growing native woody plants just west of Calgary with great success. Our environment here in Springbank is cooler and drier than in Calgary.

We do not irrigate our plants in the field (14 acres). Our landscaped areas are not irrigated either. With mechanical weeding practices (using a hoe) and a comprehensive soil maintenance plan in place, we are environmentally self-sustaining.

Our demonstration short grass prairie fescue area is showing exciting results - this in a year of limited rain - 409.6mm recorded rainfall for 2006. We use a mix of Rocky Mountain, Hard, and Sheep’s Fescue grasses + 10% blue grama grass.  Our straight Sheep’s fescue grass areas have performed well also.

The following is the  definition we use in our courses and workshops - with a little effort, some good planning and initial maintenance, results are achieved:

Low Maintenance Landscape / Xericscape / Naturalized Landscape

A system of landscaping which incorporates site specific plants into the existing conditions of climate,
topography, and exposure to wind, rain, and sun. The use of a diverse number of species of native plants which will over time become a self-sustaining landscape - requiring low moisture levels, little maintenance, and which will not only survive, but thrive.

The perception of IPM should be changed - from Integrated Pest Management to Integrated Plant Management - manage the plants so they are healthy (start with quality seed sources) compost, compost tea and they won't require environmental subsistence.

Native plants have done very well in our climate for the last 9,900 years. Only in the last 100 years, with our management practices, have the native plants suffered. With the introduction of environmentally marginal plants - including grasses - we have created a welfare system for the plants and the parks. Those who say we live in an area which has to have pesticides are probably just resistant to change. It is constant work to educate and refocus people on sustainable landscapes.

Bow Point Nursery can be reached at or 403-686-4434.