Learn More In The


This page offers resources to help HIP homeowners outside of the City of Bellingham plan and install a HIP project.  Whatcom Conservation District staff are always available to answer your questions and help you with your HIP project. Contact Ryan O’Connor, Lake Whatcom HIP Coordinator, at roconnor@whatcomcd.org or (360) 306-4701.



How HIP Works

As a first step, watch this 12-minute presentation explaining how HIP works in the county. Learn about what types of projects you can install, program requirements, reimbursement, and more.

Planning, Installing, and Caring for your Native Landscaping

Watch a 13-minute presentation with helpful tips on how to plan, install, and care for your HIP native landscaping project.

Native Plant Slide Show

Watch an 18-minute presentation and slide show showcasing the many beautiful native plants to choose from for your new landscape.

Lake Whatcom HIP Whatcom County Program Handbook

A complete reference to guide you through your HIP project.

Homeowner Acknowledgement Form

A checklist to facilitate clear communication about program offerings. We want to make sure you know what to expect from HIP before you get started.

Landscaping with Native Plants

A supplemental handbook with essential information to help you plan, install, and maintain your native landscaping project.

King County Sample Plans

Sample native landscaping plans for different sunlight and soil moisture conditions. Feeling overwhelmed by plant choices? Use these sample plans to get started. Produced by King County.

Tips for Wildfire Safe HIP Projects

Want to make sure your HIP native planting is also wildfire safe? Read these tips.

Planting Worksheet & HIP Native Plant List

Downloadable excel worksheet to use for your native landscaping project. Use this tool to calculate numbers of plants needed, amount of mulch needed, and select plants from the HIP plant list.

Native Landscaping Materials Purchasing Guide

Guide for purchasing plants, mulch, and rocks for HIP Native Landscaping projects.

Approved Mulch List

Be sure to purchase mulch from this list! Tested and approved low-phosphorus mulches for use in the Lake Whatcom watershed. Last updated Jan 2020.

Measuring Areas for your HIP Project

This handout provides detailed guidance about how to measure distances and areas using pacing, measuring devices, and online resources.

Hiring Help Guide

COMING SOON! Want to hire help installing your HIP project? Use this guide to help you find a qualified professional.

HIP Reimbursable Expenses Guide

A detailed list of project expenses that qualify for reimbursement through HIP in Whatcom County.

HIP Maintenance Agreement

Download a copy of the HIP maintenance agreement.



Sunny Shoreline Landscape Plan

If your site slopes gently toward the water, use this layout to maximize your fun in the sun.

Shoreline Connection Landscape Plan

Keeping you connected to the uses along your shoreline, this layout adds privacy from boaters and neighbors.

Shoreline Buffer Landscape Plan

Tired of the geese making a mess along your shoreline? This layout creates a barrier that doesn't detract from your water view.

Shady Creekside Landscape Plan

Along streams, use this layout to beautify your property while reducing erosion and flooding

Part Sun Privacy Landscape Plan

Creating a border of native landscaping using this layout grows a beautiful and natural barrier while keeping your views intact.

Backyard Sanctuary Landscape Plan

Use this layout to turn an open lawn area into a private place where you can relax, entertain guests, and attract birds and butterflies.

Sunny Hillside Landscape Plan

Mowing lawns on steep slopes can be a big headache. This layout helps you envision ways to plant your hillside while maintaining that spectacular view.

Deep Shade Landscape Plan

Some native plants thrive in shady areas, where weeds and moss would otherwise grow. Use this layout if you live under tall trees or for the shady side of your lot.

  • Hidden
    Used to pass the last URL as a parameter to the contact form to help with notification routing.
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.
Connect With Us

Can't find what you're looking for? Many HIP resources are constantly being updated to help program participants and professionals alike. If you need something that isn't here, or if one of our links isn't working, please send us a note using this form and we'll reply directly to you with the information you need to be successful. Thanks!