What do young salmon need along the shoreline to help them survive? What do they find? Roger Tabor has answers to these questions. Roger has researched salmon in Lake Washington for the US Fish and Wildlife Service for 20 years.

Find out more at the Green Shorelines website.

Trees framing sunset on lake

Trees and other plantings can frame your lake view.

“Sure, I like plants, but maintaining my view of the water is a higher priority.”

Many homeowners favor large expanses of lawn because they see it as the best way to protect their view. The truth is that diverse plantings can accent and improve views.

Framing views is an important principle of garden and landscape design.

  • Identify which views you want to keep and enhance.
  • Identify which views would be better screened. For example, perhaps you’d rather not look at your neighbor’s shed or boat house.  Continue Reading »

Just ask the goose. Sebastian the Talking Goose says geese prefer your lovely manicured lawn over a beach and natural plantings. Taking out part of your lawn to add a beach will likely mean fewer geese stop in to graze. Continue Reading »

Full beach with chairs

Some homeowners are reluctant to add a beach because they are concerned about losing property. While it is true that green shorelines sometimes result in smaller lawns, the square footage remains the same. Some of the lawn is replaced with a beach and shoreline vegetation.

Essentially, you’re converting your property from one use to another. A good design will maintain the ordinary high water mark line so there is no loss of dry land. Continue Reading »

The City of Kirkland’s new Shoreline Master Program update contains an innovative tool: a “decision tree” for shoreline property owners.

A homeowner can determine options to stabilize the shoreline based on:

  • The home’s setback from the water
  • Bulkhead height
  • Depth of water at bulkhead
  • Nearshore slope
  • Yard slope

Options could include a full beach, beach cove, pulling back or modifying the bulkhead, slope bioengineering and adding gravel to the nearshore. Continue Reading »

Shoreline, Mercer Island Lid Park

Lid Park West, Mercer Island

People who are interested in a green shoreline often want to see examples. “What will it look like? Will it protect my property? Show me.” 

Several parks around Lake Washington have restored their shorelines. These demonstration projects are open to the public. Seeing these sites can help answer questions, although the project scale and its goals may differ from a shoreline home. Continue Reading »


Green Shores will help get waterfront homes from this . . .

A new grant-funded project will develop critical tools to encourage shoreline property owners to make their shorelines greener. Tools will include a voluntary rating system for shoreline development, along with incentives.

The City of Seattle, San Juan County, Washington Sea Grant and Islands Trust in British Columbia are partnering on the Green Shores for Homes grant.

Full beach with canoe

. . . To something that looks more like this.

The project will focus on both freshwater and marine shorelines.

More than 70 percent of the Lake Washington and Lake Sammamish shorelines are lined with bulkheads, rip rap or other armoring. Along Puget Sound shorelines, 25 to 60 percent of the shoreline is armored. These hard shorelines don’t provide shelter and limit food for fish, birds and other wildlife. They have also lost their natural function of replenishing beaches with sediment. 

Continue Reading »