Trees and shrubs play important roles in ecosystems. They are necessary components of the mid and overstory layers of vegetative environments providing food, shelter, and nesting habitat for wildlife.
Increasing the area covered by plants in your yard or community has many benefits for you and wildlife. This is a foundational theme in our work at Habitat Network where we consistently advocate for more areas to be landscaped with plant-life to increase access for wildlife, like this Monarch caterpillar enjoying Whorled Milkweed (Asclepias verticillata) in a native flower bed.
Pant ID can be difficult but these tips will give you the resources you need to get to know the all
of plants in your gardens.
Have you had enough of all the mowing, watering, and chemical applications needed to keep your traditional turf short, green, and weed free? Are you interested in improving your yard to provide habitat for birds and other wildlife but still want to keep a grassy open area for recreation? Perhaps it is time to go […]
If you've fought the lawn and the lawn won, let this inspire you to make a come back.
There are many factors to consider when choosing native grasses. Let this guide help you decide.
Flowering plants are foundational in the understory of a structurally diverse habitat. Their role is multifaceted–as sources of food for pollinators, caterpillars, birds, and other herbivores, to create aesthetic appeal, and as homes for ecologically important fauna like predatory insects. Without flowering plants these crucial ecological relationships would collapse, changing the nature of the site, and its potential ecosystem services dramatically. This is true especially for native flowers.
It might seem like a plant is a plant, but some research suggests that the coevolution of insects and plants in shared ecosystems over millions of years means that many insects have developed special relationships with particular plants.
After all the work of prepping, planting, and preening your gardens, the last thing you want to see are insects eating it to the ground. If we take a look at the real and persistent risks of insecticide use and compare it to the effectiveness of safer alternatives, we find the equation is not as straightforward as many of the marketing labels would have you believe.
If planting native is in your agenda for your gardens, this seed company guide may be helpful.