Native Gardening


mrsclem

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There have been 2 areas here set up as monarch sanctuaries. I'm planning on planting a new area with lots of butterfly friendly plants. Not bringing any cats in this year. I have 3 outdoor canopies that will make good screened in enclosures to protect them.
 

JBtheExplorer

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My Prairie Smoke is quickly growing. There are buds all over my original plant, and I also noticed buds on one of my second-year plants. I have about half a dozen plants, and I'll be continuing to add more in all of my gardens. I can't say enough good things about this specie.

It's an early bloomer, its seedhead stage is even more impressive than its flowering stage, it has nice foliage that stays green year-round, it stays small which is perfect for people who like smaller plants or have smaller gardens.
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JBtheExplorer

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Rue Anemone is growing. This'll be its first full year in my garden.
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Eastern Red Columbine is popping up. Hopefully the rabbits don't destroy them all. This'll be the first year where quite a few plants are old enough to bloom.
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I read an article about monarch habitat and one of the biggest areas where they used to find milkweed was alongside farm fields and in ditches. We would find large swathes of it along the railroad tracks growing up - milkweed was everywhere. Instead of being mowed, all those areas are now routinely sprayed with weed killer and all the milkweed destroyed.
 

JBtheExplorer

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I read an article about monarch habitat and one of the biggest areas where they used to find milkweed was alongside farm fields and in ditches. We would find large swathes of it along the railroad tracks growing up - milkweed was everywhere. Instead of being mowed, all those areas are now routinely sprayed with weed killer and all the milkweed destroyed.
Yes, that is accurate. When the prairies were first destroyed, milkweed was one of a handful of plant types that were able to thrive along the edges of farm fields. Sadly, that is not as common as it once was. Some small farms do things in a more environmentally-friendly way, but the large industrial farms don't care at all.
 

addy1

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They spray something on the fields here that kills any weeds within 24 hours. Goes from green to brown overnight.
 

JBtheExplorer

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I've got tons of Prairie Smoke flowers this year. At least, until the rabbit gets to them.
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Old stems are as important to pollinators as flowers. They use stems to lay eggs in. This stem was from Blue Giant Hyssop, which you can see growing in the background.
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JBtheExplorer

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Rue Anemone has bloomed! This is the first flower in my main native garden this year!

When I bought it last year, I knew it was a Spring-blooming plant, but didn't realized it'd be the first to bloom in the native garden! Now I like it even more. Hoping I can collect seeds and have more in the future.

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JBtheExplorer

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A month later and Rue Anemone is still going strong.

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Wild Geraniums are starting to bloom in the native garden now, despite the deer eating them to the ground earlier this spring.
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Prairie Smoke is growing troll hair.
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That's because the temperature is the same as it was a month ago! No spring this year... moving straight to summer!
 

JBtheExplorer

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Woah! Just found monarch eggs! Never had them this early before.
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Sadly, many of my milkweeds have had to be removed due to milkweed yellows disease, and I've also been dealing with aster yellows, and I'm worried they both are continuing to spread faster than I can detect.
 
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I thought I spotted a monarch in my yard yesterday, too... very early but welcome any time!
 

JBtheExplorer

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I thought I spotted a monarch in my yard yesterday, too... very early but welcome any time!
Yes, they've been around here for weeks! I've counted dozens since mid-May. I've seen them this early before, but usually not as many this early, and never had eggs this early before.
 

mrsclem

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I haven't seen any monarchs yet. Milkweed is getting ready to bloom so hopefully that will bring some in.
 

JBtheExplorer

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The local Wild Ones native plant sale was today. Picked up a few.

I wanted Meadow Anemone last year but didn't grab it, so I made sure to grab it this year. I think it may go in my rain garden, but I'm not entirely sure yet.

Royal Catchfly is one I've wanted to try for a few years, since hummingbirds like it. We'll see how it does. It's red, which is a rare color in natives, so it's always nice to find something red.

I also grabbed another Side-oats Grama. I picked one up at the sale last year and thoroughly enjoyed it, so I thought I'd grab another this year.


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Oh, and they also gave me like six packet of free milkweed seeds!
 
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j.w

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The names they come up w/for some plants :D
Wondering if the red one really catches flies and does grama really love her side of oats?
 

JBtheExplorer

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The names they come up w/for some plants :D
Wondering if the red one really catches flies and does grama really love her side of oats?
:LOL:

Royal Catchfly does catch flies! From what I remember reading a few years ago, flies and small insects get caught on sticky glands on the stems and die. I don't think the plant actually gets any benefit from them, which is weird. I believe that it's somehow related to carnivorous plants.
 
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mrsclem

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I'm guessing I should have pruned back some of my plants from last year but I wasn't sure what was what. Hummingbird mint (Korean mint) is a huge bush and my New England waters are over 5'. Next year I will pinch things back.
 

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