Native Gardening


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Any seedlings that grow around here in Autumn won't survive Winter. I'm not sure if that's different for your climate.
There's a lot of different things that go into when a seed starts growing. Do you know which seedlings are growing?
Sometimes, a wet Autumn will get some seedlings to grow. Also, while seeds typically start dropping in Autumn, many don't actually drop until late Autumn or throughout Winter, when it is too cold for them to start growing. It could also depend on where you got your seeds from. It's possible that the seller already stratified the seeds or at least kept them in a fridge which may have been enough to trick the seeds once you put them outdoors in warmer conditions. Sometimes they can just randomly decide to grow, too. Last year, I had a couple milkweed seeds start growing right on the seed pod before I could harvest them. Seeds are like people. They have rules, but there's always some that don't follow them.

I always wait until December to put seeds out, when the average temps are in the mid-30's.
thank you :) The seeds that start growing.. one is a type of sunflower (from bee friendly package I got for free) and another i think is cosmos (which will die, i'm sure). they are annual so I think they will not survive.
yea may be i'll get more seeds for the middle of winter planting :) Only I dont remember where i put what!! lol.

The milkweed seeds are not growing, so I hope it's ok.
 

addy1

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Here we are in that weather that can be darn cold fall, darn warm fall, even warm January. I put out seeds in the fall, which I did last fall, they all grew and died. And I put out a lot of seeds. Lousy return, this year I am waiting until Mayish to put them out. Then if we are in a drought, I will need to haul hoses to water until the plants are around 3 inches tall. then they can be on their own. I have to haul out around 200 feet of hose which is a real pita.

For bees and plants I would rather it turned cold and stayed cold.
 

JBtheExplorer

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Here's a look at 2016 in my Native Garden. This is a slideshow starting in January and ending just a few days ago after our recent snowfall. Hope you all enjoy! I can hardly wait for May to get here!

 
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JBtheExplorer

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Finished three more native bee houses for the native garden as well as the pond area. Still have to make nesting cavities to place inside of them. They'll be used by docile bees like Mason Bees and Leaf Cutter Bees, among others.

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Some of you saw the one I made awhile back, but if you haven't, here's what the finished product looks like: Nesting cavities at various sizes, as well as chicken wire to prevent birds from digging in the holes.

IMG_1284 copy.jpg
 

JBtheExplorer

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In related news,

Bumblebees make US endangered-species list for first time
In buzzworthy news, the US Fish and Wildlife Service now protects the rusty patched bumblebee.



It's something I've been watching since it was initially announced. Although the official acknowledgement is important, being listed wont save them. Restoring habitat and ceasing use of pesticides would go a long way, but our country is only marginally interested in doing so. We'd need to make significant changes in a very short amount of time.

Native gardening is a part of those good changes. If enough people dedicate even a part of their yards to habitat restoration, backyards across the state and country can link together to create habitat, and also create links between prairies or woodlands.

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JBtheExplorer

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Awesome stuff on the bee boxes. I made one two years ago and have mason bees fill the holes every year....might have to drill new logs next year.
 

peter hillman

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Here's a first-time bloomer in my native garden. Wild Geranium. I have one by the pond too but it hasn't bloomed yet.
View attachment 99547
I've got that plant.. very delicate foliage. Of course hmm, mine wasn't native, Tahoe has a great nursery that we visit.
Buttt. I did remove my native Sagebrush. Yes it's the state flower, and it was truly native to the property, that exact spot actually. But It's grown ugly over the years and entangled in the rabbit wire I put around the pond when my daughter was born, 22 yrs ago. So out it came and took away a little morning shade it provided. I'm thinking what I should replace it with now.
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A local nursery sold me a plant years ago as "wild geranium". Turns out is was wild all right, but definitely NOT geranium. I have spent years trying to eradicate it from my garden. I don't think I will ever be entirely rid of it. That was the ultimate lesson in "know what you're planting before you plant"! Of course we didn't have the internet back then, so I had to trust the "expert". Grrrrr!
 

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TallGrass, that's a really cool looking photo. Did this just fully convert an ordinary mowed front yard into the tall native bluestem and more? What do the neighbors think?
 

addy1

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I have converted a lot of our grass to wildflower fields. Dear hubby bought me a tiller for my tractor, tilled up a lot of the grass threw down seeds. With all this rain they are all popping up beautifully. Now we need some sun!
 
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TallGrass, that's a really cool looking photo. Did this just fully convert an ordinary mowed front yard into the tall native bluestem and more? What do the neighbors think?
Thank you! There's a little ribbon of turf grass that runs across the front yard as a visual break.

This photo's vantage point is from the side with the most grass. (About 98% prairiegrass/flowers.) This side also has big bluestem, Indian grass, bee balm, goldenrod, asters, Joe Pye weed, thimbleweed, pussytoes, pasqueflower, rattlesnake master, pentsemon, side oats gramma, blue gramma, false blue indigo, mountain mint, blazing star, common milkweed, butterfly weed, swamp milkweed, queen of the prairie, Black-eyed Susans and probably a few other plants I'm forgetting.

The other side has a smaller planting, more lawn and then an island with a wild rose bush, little bluestem and switch grass.

Only one neighbor (a few houses down) immediately complemented the garden. I started it in 2014. No one, including the neighbors on either side of me, have complained. But I get the impression that they don't "get it."

Last fall, a neighbor across the street came over while I was working in the yard.

NEIGHBOR: This is really great! It's looking really good now.
ME: Thank you!
NEIGHBOR: I was worried for a while.
ME: It is a little unorthodox.
NEIGHBOR: At first I thought, 'This is a little weird.'
ME: Well, it does take time for plants to mature. They were pretty small when I planted them.
NEIGHBOR: As long as no one complains to the city!
[Neighbor walks away.]

Haha.

Here are a few older photos showing the side of the yard with the most prairiegrass from inside the yard looking out at the street, and a shot from winter:
 

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