Living Landscape Laboratory

At APCC’s home in Dennis, we consider the grounds to be our Living Landscape Laboratory. Here, the public is invited to view ways they can better steward their land. Visitors can observe different means to manage stormwater; see displays of native plants integrated into an existing landscape; learn about various approaches to convert lawn area to native plantings; see energy and water conservation methods in use; and learn more about composting and chemical-free land care practices.

The Living Landscape Laboratory is our prime educational venue where we are making efforts to practice what we preach in being good stewards of the land and water. We endeavor to employ environmentally-friendly sustainable practices to demonstrate to those who visit what they can do on their own piece of Cape Cod.

To request to tour the grounds, contact Kristin Andres, Director of Education & Outreach at

Why Sustainability is Important

Sustainability is the cornerstone of the environmental ethic. It means putting the environment first in everything we do by making educated choices to reduce energy consumption, water consumption, reduce our carbon footprint and be good stewards of the land. Through reducing, recycling, reusing and conserving, we are placing less of a burden on the environment and our natural resources.

As we manage our new office, both inside and out, we make every effort to examine our choices so we might serve as an example of what it means to live sustainably.

What We Are Doing at APCC Headquarters

Waste Reduction: We strive to minimize office paper use by doing as much as we can digitally, only printing documents when necessary. We are cognizant about our choices in purchasing products.

Composting: We compost all our food waste on site with a homemade anaerobic compost system. We also compost yard debris through a larger composting system made of wooden pallets.

Recycling: All recyclables are taken to the Dennis Transfer Station, and we strive for a goal of zero waste.

Reuse and Repurposing: We purchase paper products with 50% or more recycled content. Where possible we’ve sought used garden tools instead of purchasing new. Our vegetable garden features repurposing.

Water Conservation: We have installed several rain barrels at our gutter downspouts to catch rainwater from the roof, which we use to water plants. Rainwater is free, it’s preferred by plants and it conserves potable water that takes energy to pull from the ground.

Lawn Reduction, Increase Biodiversity: With the help of volunteers and BlueFlax Design, we’re reducing lawn area in favor of a diversity of native perennials and shrubs that are attractive and also support native pollinators and birds. Click here for a list of natives we’ve planted so far.

Sustainable Gardening: We’ve planted a vegetable garden to promote local food production.

Stormwater Management: Our handicapped parking spot and path are made of porous pave®, an asphalt alternative made of recycled tires. This new application allows rainwater to drain through and soak into the ground where it falls. This is an example of how to best manage stormwater, which carries harmful pollutants into our rivers, streams, ponds, and the ocean.

In September 2016, we installed a rain garden to capture roof runoff from one of the gutter downspouts.