Pollinators – such as bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds – play a critical role in flower reproduction and fruit and vegetable growth. Planting a pollinator-friendly garden will not only contribute to your property’s aesthetic but with the dwindling numbers of pollinators, you’re helping to preserve their populations. Since planting and maintaining a pollinator-friendly garden can be a complex task, read about our helpful tips to get you started.
Choose the Location Your Garden
Flowering plants can thrive in both sun and shade, but most pollinators – especially butterflies – prefer to bask in the sun. Popular pollinator-friendly wildflowers also grow best in partial or full sun and in areas protected from wind and storms. Furthermore, you’ll need to prepare the plot by clearing it of grass and current plant cover and work to improve the habitability of your soil.
Choose Plants Native to Your Region
Planting a diverse spectrum of flowering plants is a great way to attract pollinators, but it is important to grow plants native to your region, as your local pollinators have evolved to interact with these florae. According to the University of New Hampshire, New England has an extensive variety of pollinator-friendly plants including perennials, annuals, shrubs, and so forth. But some additional things to keep in mind before beginning your garden include:
- Choose pollen-rich flowers: In order to attract pollinators, you must provide pollen.
- Choose flowers of varying species and sizes: Each pollinator has its own method of sourcing pollen, so make sure to diversify to make sure no one’s left out.
- Avoid modern plant hybrids: Many plants have been cross-pollinated to promote larger blooms with vibrant colors, but in the process, they may have lost their ability to produce pollen.
Avoid Garden Cleanup Until Spring
Some pollinators spend the winter cycling through different life stages such as eggs and larvae. They will often reside in hollow stems or spend the winter in leaf litter. Though it may leave your garden appearing messy, you should avoid uprooting your perennials and deadheading until spring and keep leaves undisturbed through the winter.
Planting and maintaining a pollinator-friendly garden is a great way to add color to your property and help conserve the pollinator population. Dolan Landscaping is here to help with years of experience with landscape construction, plant selections, and soil preparation, and we can further contribute to your property’s aesthetic with our landscaping design and maintenance. For more information about our services, don’t hesitate to contact us.