Bee Hotels or Natural Habitat?

There is a huge wave of enthusiasm for bee hotels and that’s totally understandable – we all want to help native bees that are facing incredible challenges. A landscape with lots of pollinator-friendly flowers is an important forage buffet, but a landscape that also provide areas for pollinators to nest, shelter and overwinter – now that is a pollinator garden.…

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Where Are the Bees, Butterflies and Other Insects? Facts & Tips

From individual observations to published research, the situation seems clear – insect populations are declining across the globe. It’s a crisis that gets little play in the media, surpassed daily by “news” of unhinged political tweets or the latest Kardashian romance. Anecdotal evidence is abundant – recent posts on NABA Chat (North American Butterfly Association) from across the country report a…

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5 Ecological Landscape Resolutions Worth Making

Anise Hysop and pollinators

Losing weight and curbing bad habits don’t have to be the only resolutions you make for the New Year. How about adopting some resolutions that will have a positive impact on the environment around you?  Here are 5 ecological landscape resolutions worth making: Resolution#1: Become a Climate Change Steward – Plant More Trees The efforts of nations are critical to…

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Planting for Specialist Native Bees

Our estimated 4,000 native bee species in the United States and Canada fall into one of two categories – pollen generalists and pollen specialists. Generalist bees are the majority, accounting for approximately 75% of all bee species. It is their good fortune to be able to forage on many different native plant species, and often on a number of non-native…

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The Pollinator Victory Garden: Winning the War on Pollinator Decline

You don’t have to be a gardener or a landscape professional to know that many pollinators are in trouble.  The White House has taken notice and on May 19, 2015, released the “Pollinator Research Action Plan.”  In the summary of the plan, three “overarching goals” are cited; unfortunately, our 4,000 species of native bees were not highlighted in these goals,…

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Native Bogs with Ron Determann of Atlanta Botanical Garden

If you haven’t seen a native bog in full bloom, then make sure to put that on your bucket list. A recent trip south this fall provided me with the excuse I needed to see the splendid bog gardens at the Atlanta Botanical Garden. Both ornamental and endangered, native bogs are some of our most threatened ecosystems. Wanting to learn…

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Powerful Prunus: A Visit With Dr. Doug Tallamy

Some of our most ecologically powerful native plants are the ones we never plant!   It’s time for a change, if we really want to make a difference to our environment. Often considered a “weedy tree”, our native Black Cherry (Prunus serotina) is an extraordinarily valuable plant in nature.   Native to most of the Eastern half of the U.S., Black Cherry…

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Going Pesticide-Free for Pollinators at The Farm Between

This past August, I took a road trip to one of my favorite states, Vermont, where lots of good things are happening with organic and pesticide-free landscapes and nursery production.  One of my stops was “The Farm Between” in pastoral Jeffersonville, Vermont.  This is one of the oldest farms in the area, dating back to the early 1800s;  it used…

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20 Resolutions for the EcoBeneficial Landscape

It’s that time of year to make your resolutions for 2015.  Don’t forget to include your landscape!  Here are 20 resolutions to get you started toward a healthier ecosystem: 1) Reduce or eliminate the “Green Desert” (turf/lawn). Exotic turf grass is an ecological wasteland.  When replacing lawn, don’t replace one monoculture with another.  Plant diversely using regionally appropriate native plants.…

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