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Valerie Kehoe
Program Coordinator, Horticulture
University of Illinois Extension
9415 South Western Avenue, Suite 201
Chicago, IL 60643
Phone: 773-233-2900
FAX: 773-233-9183

Gemini Bhalsod
Extension Educator, Horticulture
University of Illinois Extension
1114 N. Arlington Heights Road
Suite 201
Arlington Heights, IL 60004
Phone: 847-201-4176
FAX: 847-201-4175

Susan Gasper
Extension Educator, S.T.E.M.
University of Illinois Extension
9415 South Western Avenue, Suite 201
Chicago, IL 60643
Phone: 773-233-2900
FAX: 773-233-9183

Nancy Kreith
Extension Educator, Horticulture
University of Illinois Extension
4747 Lincoln Mall Drive
Suite 601
Matteson, IL 60443
Phone: 708-679-6889
FAX: 708-679-6855

Conservation@Home Program

Conservation@Home Program

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Conservation@Home Cook County recognizes and certifies properties that demonstrate environmentally sound landscape practices. This program is brought to you by the partnership of Forest Preserves of Cook County and University of Illinois Extension.

Through the Conservation@Home certification program, residents of Cook County have the opportunity to shape their private landscapes in a conservation-minded way with guidance and criteria provided for them. Criteria can be downloaded below.

The biggest reward for integrating sustainable practices on your property is being aware that you are contributing to clean water, rich soil and resilient ecosystems that support people and wildlife. The Conservation@Home certificate recognizes yards and sites that are conscientiously improving their area for the environment and humanity.

For more information, please contact Val Kehoe at or 773.233.2900.

Conservation@Home is a program of The Conservation Foundation. University of Illinois Extension is pleased to be a partner.

Have Your Land in Cook County Evaluated

For a one-time fee of $50, certified home gardeners will receive a Conservation@Home sign to post in their yard, a subscription to our seasonal newsletter, and receive early notifications of upcoming plants sales and Conservation@Home programs in the Forest Preserves. *Scholarships are available for those with financial need.

Before applying, please review the 2017 Conservation@Home Criteria below. To apply for Conservation@Home certification click here.

Certification Process

1. Resident submits application online

2. C@H Coordinator reviews application and consults with resident

3. If it is determined that the resident is ready for a home visit, resident submits $50 fee

4. Evaluator conducts phone interview and schedules home visit to last approximately one hour

5. Yard is evaluated and if certifiable, C@H sign is awarded

6. Resident begins receiving C@H perks

Please look for us at one of the following free forest preserves special events:

November 19 – Settlers’ Day, Sand Ridge Nature Center

December 9- Conservation@Home Sustainable Seed Starting-Native Plant Edition, Crabtree   Native Center

Learn more about conservation practices to implement in your yard at these free forest preserves public program:

For more information, please visit:

Downloads for your reference