Grounded logo

Landscapes as beautiful to nature as they are to you

Naturalized gardens designed and installed

Can we garden for nature as well as for humans? Can we make a beautiful landscape full of native plants that have co-evolved with Ontario's insects and birds? Can we see the world from the perspective of everything in it, not just through our own eyes? And can we leave our small patch of the planet a little bit better?

Why you'll feel good when you garden for life

A better future lies just outside your door.

Imagine no more mowing. No more fertilizing. Much less watering. Instead, you'll have a garden alive with butterflies and birds that changes month by month, season by season.

With the world facing a biodiversity crisis, it's hard to know what to do. The problem seems so big. One answer is to act where you can: close to home, healing the world one garden at a time.

Most importantly, you'll feel a deeper connection with your home and the land you live on. You'll be at the vanguard of humanity's rediscovered healthy relationship with the rest of nature.

Get a free guide to natural gardens

Fill out the form to get a free guide to creating natural gardens in Haliburton County and surrounding areas, plus updates about Grounded and The Garden at Lucas House.

Serving Haliburton County and surrounding areas

Lawn Replacement and Native Plant Gardens

By admin | January 23, 2024

Lawns, long a symbol of garden perfection, have environmental and psychological implications. Transform your garden into a landscape that benefits you – and nature.

Shoreline Naturalization

By admin | January 23, 2024

Haliburton County’s lakes are its lifeblood, and healthy lakes require healthy shorelines. We can help bring your shoreline back to life.

Septic System Landscaping

By admin | January 23, 2024

Don’t know what to do with your septic bed? Using it for a native plant garden is a great way to combine functionality and natural beauty.

About Simon Payn

My name is Simon Payn and I help people transform their boring lawns into gardens that are beautiful for wildlife as well as for humans.

Sometimes it takes five decades of life to figure out your calling. Now I've discovered it. Fascinated by nature and gardens as a child, finally I've found a way to combine both, and to do our part to fix the biodiversity crisis the world is facing. Now my hands are in the soil and my head is in native plants.

I've taken several courses with the University of Guelph, including one on naturalizing urban landscapes. And I've created a demonstration native plant garden in downtown Haliburton.

Gardens that please nature as well as humans are the future. Not only do they save hours of mowing and maintenance, but they create an ecosystem rich in invertebrates, birds and mammals. These types of gardens help us do our bit to fix our broken relationship with nature, and I want to bring them to the Haliburton Highlands.

What is Grounded?


University of Guelph

  • Naturalizing and Restoring Landscapes
  • Plant Identification
  • Business Principles in Horticulture

Kelly D Norris

  • New Naturalism Academy


The Garden at Lucas House in Haliburton

One century building.
One fewer lawn.
One Grounded garden.

Making Gardens

Helpful books, articles and other resources

By admin | January 31, 2024

A sample of excellent books and articles about native plant garden design.

Plugs: Striking the Perfect Balance in Garden Planting

By admin | January 17, 2024

In the world of gardening, particularly when it comes to cultivating native plant gardens, the choice between starting with seeds, plugs, or larger plants can significantly impact the garden’s development and sustainability. Among these options, plugs often emerge as the ‘Goldilocks solution’ – not too big, not too small, but just right for creating dense, thriving native plant landscapes.

Garden Growth: Understanding the Stages from Year One and Beyond

By admin | January 17, 2024

Embarking on the journey of creating a naturalized, native plant garden is a venture into the dynamic world of nature’s rhythms and cycles. Unlike traditional gardens that often demand immediate results, a native garden unfolds its beauty gradually, revealing its full splendor over time.

Growing a Green Renaissance

Sowing Seeds of Change: Garden Rebellion as a Model for Environmental Action

By admin | January 17, 2024

In the quiet corners of our backyards, a revolution is taking root. It’s called the garden rebellion — a movement where ordinary gardeners are transforming their manicured lawns into wild, native havens. But this movement is more than just about changing gardening practices; it’s a microcosm of the societal shifts needed to combat global challenges like climate change and biodiversity loss.

Are You a Garden Rebel?

By admin | January 17, 2024

A new breed of gardener is emerging. These are the ‘garden rebels’ — individuals who are breaking away from the traditional, manicured lawns and perfectly pruned flower beds to embrace a more natural, sustainable approach to gardening.

Working with Nature, Not Against It: The Joy of Native Plant Gardening

By admin | January 17, 2024

Gardening, long viewed as a laborious battle against the whims of nature, is being reimagined. The traditional image of endless weeding, watering, and pest control is giving way to a more harmonious approach: native plant gardening. This method is a dance with nature, not a fight against it.

Bringing Back Biodiversity

Connecting Nature: Building Wildlife Corridors with Urban Native Gardens

By admin | January 17, 2024

In the heart of urban landscapes, where concrete often overshadows greenery, wildlife corridors serve as critical lifelines. These green passages, created through thoughtful planting of native gardens, provide a refuge for urban wildlife, connecting isolated natural habitats.

Native Gardens: Your Personal Contribution to Fighting Biodiversity Loss

By admin | January 17, 2024

In the face of climate change and biodiversity loss, feelings of helplessness are common. Yet, there is a powerful tool within our reach to combat these global challenges: native plant gardening. This practice not only offers environmental benefits but also empowers individuals to make a tangible difference.

From Pollinators to Whole Ecosystems: Expanding Our Gardening Focus

By admin | January 17, 2024

In recent years, the surge in popularity of pollinator gardens has been a heartening development for environmental enthusiasts and gardeners alike. These gardens, teeming with bees, butterflies, and other pollinators, have become symbols of ecological awareness and conservation. Yet, as we delve deeper into the realms of sustainable gardening, a broader perspective emerges, one that considers not only pollinators but the entire ecosystem.

Get in touch

If you'd like to talk about Grounded gardens, please contact Simon Payn.

123 Maple Ave.
Box 261,
Haliburton, ON  K0M 1S0

Get a free guide to natural gardens

Fill out the form to get a free guide to creating natural gardens in Haliburton County and surrounding areas, plus updates about Grounded and The Garden at Lucas House.