In 2003, North Lake initiated a program to introduce native Texas plants to the landscape management plan. In addition to fostering a sense of environmental stewardship among the college community, objectives included cost reductions, transferable education and awareness, creation of a distinct landscape profile and aesthetic improvements.
Since implementation of the Native Garden plan, irrigation volumes have been reduced by 50% or more in converted gardens and landscapes. It is important to note that North Lake irrigates the majority of the Central Campus with recycled storm water; native gardens are established to target reductions in areas served by city metered water.
Labor has been reduced by 70% and redirected to enhancements in other service zones of the campus. Seasonal plant material costs have been eliminated or redirected to other areas of the college.
The landscape consists of a variety of native Texas plants including flowers, vines, succulents and trees.
In 2014, North Lake College's Central Campus was officially certified as a Tree Campus USA by the Arbor Day Foundation.
Community Vegetable Garden
North Lake's community garden, above the basketball gym, is open to all. The garden is managed by students from Phi Theta Kappa
, the campus honor society, and in the summertime is full of fresh vegetables, including zucchini, squash, and bell peppers.