On June 18, 2013, I attended a workshop on providing habitat for beneficial insects. One of the instructors mentioned that he had just been checking on dead bees in a parking lot in Wilsonville, Oregon, on I-5 near Salem. The next day, the local media reported a mass bee killing at that parking lot. Mass … Continue reading Who’s Killing the Bees?
Native plants evolved with a gigantic number of associated microbes, fungi, bacteria, herbivores, and insects. It follows that plants don't exist by themselves - they need the organisms that helped them adapt and change over the ages. For home gardeners, insect assistants are one of the easiest and most interesting class of partners to manage … Continue reading Native Plants 101: Protecting Your Native Fauna
Growing Native Plants Native plants are best for native insects, pollinators, birds, and local wildlife. Plants and animals evolved together, so the ones that are native are always the best for local wildlife. Mix them in with your ornamentals, and you will have a diverse landscape teeming with healthy life! You will have more … Continue reading Native Plants 101: Basic Growing Information
If the last several posts on helpful garden residents have piqued your interest, you are now ready to stride confidently into your garden (yes, even in winter) to find and identify the wonderful creatures that await you! Here are some great resources to help you in your search for more diverse and intriguing friends A … Continue reading Beneficial of the Week 5
Keeping you entertained and surprised by the beneficial organisms around you, this week it is: How can this be beneficial to us?? Yellowjackets are ferocious and irritating. What possible use could they be? Yellowjackets are ferocious. I was not too bothered by them until I made the mistake of approaching a nest too closely. Yikes. … Continue reading Beneficial Organism of the Week 3
This week it's a bird, and you might be surprised that it's a non-native, obnoxious one: STARLINGS! Mostly starlings are considered pests, ever since that guy that thought it was a good idea to import every animal Shakespeare mentioned into North America did, in fact, import them. But one good thing about flocks of starlings … Continue reading Beneficial Organism of the Week 2