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What is the Plant Grant:

The Earth Sangha Plant Grant is our way of supporting small-scale, citizen-led restoration efforts across Northern Virginia. Year round, we accept applications for restoration projects in need of local-ecotype native plants. We then offer a matching grant on plants purchased (essentially a buy-one, get-one free offer) good for one season up to a certain dollar amount. No project is too small, whether it’s a community-led invasive pull, or a larger project with multiple partners, we want to support thoughtful restoration efforts on public lands.

To increase transparency and equity, awards are standardized. Public lands will be offered a match of up to $1,000; community lands up to $500; and one-time homeowner grants up to $100.

How to Apply:

Plant Grants are awarded on a rolling basis, per-year, so please apply early for your best chances of acceptance. All grants are based on availability at our Wild Plant Nursery. As we never order plants or seed in from other growers or suppliers, we may periodically suspend or cap the number of Plant Grants issued per year at our discretion. The highest priority will be given to projects likely to have the greatest ecological benefit. 

If you have any questions about the Earth Sangha's Plant Grant program, please email Matt Bright at

Application Requirements

Public Parks and Community Lands Projects should have the following:​

  • Ongoing conservation or restoration work occurring on public lands in Northern Virginia (projects in Fairfax County, our home jurisdiction, are given first priority)

  • Letter of support from a staff member at a relevant public agency (whoever owns or administers the area in question; e.g. Fairfax County Park Authority), an email is fine

  • Proposed plant list for the site in question (we can help you refine this, if needed)

  • Timeline for the planting

  • Plan for maintenance of the planting site

Private Property Projects should have the following:

  • To be eligible, homeowner must be Earth Sangha members

  • Must have, or be pursuing some form of wildlife habitat certification (for instance, Audubon at Home, or National Wildlife Federation Certified Wildlife Habitat.

  • Proposed plant list for the site in question (we can help you refine this, if needed)

  • Timeline for the planting

  • Plan for maintenance of the planting site

How we evaluate Plant Grant applications:

The Plant Grant program is designed to assist those trying to restore natural areas on in Northern Virginia on a small to medium scale.


We define public lands as any space owned by a local government agency to include parks and other “green space” open to general public use.


Community lands is defined as schools, churches and other faith communities, HOAs, and libraries. In an effort to be fair to all students and educators, we include independent schools in this category as well public schools. 

Private property grants to local homeowners are issued once for the lifetime of the property in order to jumpstart conservation at home. These projects must have, or be pursuing some form of wildlife habitat certification.

We try and differentiate between projects with a goal of ecological restoration (that is, returning an area to a natural state as best as is feasible) and projects with more of a gardening focus (e.g. the creation of a pollinator garden). Our top priority are for projects aiming towards restoring areas and/or buffering existing natural areas, but we do not rule out support of other projects.


Support from a relevant agency sponsor is a firm requirement. Working on public lands without permission may inadvertently damage sensitive natural areas. You must submit a letter of support from a staff member, supervisor, manager, or other qualified individual to ensure that your work is officially sanctioned.


Occasionally, we may feel that a project is not the right fit for the Plant Grant program, but we may suggest other ways that we can support your efforts. For example, for pollinator gardens or other small-scale plantings at schools our Schoolyard Garden Kits may be a better option. For complex projects where you need more help and support from Earth Sangha staff (e.g. revisions of plant lists, site visits) we may ask that you work with us outside of the Plant Grant to give us both more flexibility.

Notes and Disclaimers:

  • All groups must complete the reporting requirements (Fill out our simple 1 page summary form of how the project went, and include photos of the restored area and/or volunteers at work)

  • Qualifying plant purchased must be made at our members’ rate of $6/pot for herbaceous plants and $15/pot for trees and shrubs. If we’re offering items at further discounts or donations, you can take advantage of those offers too, but they won’t qualify for an extra free plant.

  • Plant purchases need not be picked up all in one go, nor do planting events need to happen in one day or event. You have the whole season, so you can continue to work at your own pace.

  • Donated plants are subject to availability and site suitability.

  • As long as the grant report is filed with us, public and community land groups are free to reapply for subsequent support.

  • Any photos sent to us as part of the application and report may be used by the Earth Sangha online or in print.

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