Dundas Valley Pollinator Garden
The Dundas Valley Trail Centre now has a new pollinator garden located just outside the education portable. The area was prepped in 2015 and planted this year. The garden not only makes the area more attractive visually, but will help all of our local pollinators.
Butterfly & Pollinator Garden
Studies have shown that pollinator populations have drastically declined. These beneficial small creatures are under pressure from loss of habitat, loss of food sources, disease, and pesticides. Pollinators include butterflies, bees, flies, moths, other insects, Hummingbirds, and even bats!
The goal of the Butterfly & Pollinator Garden is to create an environment that attracts butterflies and other pollinators by planting native species of plants to provide food, nesting and overwintering habitat for all of their life stages. You can also include other items in the garden such as; butterfly, bat & bee houses and a shallow sandy, wet area for ‘puddling . Puddling is the behavior of butterflies when they sip water from shallow puddles on the ground. The water in the puddles has absorbed minerals from the soil below. Butterflies need these minerals to supplement their diet of nectar.
The butterfly population, specifically the Monarch Butterfly is rapidly declining. Many butterflies are becoming less abundant as a result of habitat destruction and fragmentation, and they do not feed on the plants normally found in gardens.
Benefits of Butterfly & Pollinator Gardens
- One of every three bites of food we eat is dependent on pollinators
- Pollinators pollinate over 90% of all flowering plants
- Pollinators are an important food source for birds, bats and other animals
- Solitary Bees nest in the ground, build tunnels that improve soil texture, mix nutrients into the soil, the tunnels help water to get down into the soil to the roots of plants
- Butterflies and moths are indicators of a healthy ecosystem, like the “canaries in a coal mine,” the declining health of butterfly populations can alert people to problems in the ecosystem
- You can help ensure the survival of Monarch butterflies by planting Milkweed in your garden, the larvae (caterpillars) of monarch butterflies ONLY eat milkweed
Potential Planting List for Pollinator Gardens – there are lots more!
|Plant||Height||Flower Timing||Sun/Shade Preference|
|Big blue stem||< 2m||N/A||Full sun|
|Virginia wild rye||< 2m||N/A||Full sun|
|Woodland sunflower||< 1.5m||July-September||Partial shade|
|Allium (giant onion)||<1.5m||April-June||Full sun|
|Bergamot||< 1.2m||June-September||Full sun|
|Wild columbine||< 1m||May-June||Partial shade|
|Black eyed Susan||< 1m||June-October||Full sun|
|Grass leafed goldenrod||< 1m||June-September||Full sun|
|Wild blue flag iris||60-90cm||May-August||Full/partial sun|
|Garden iris||60-90cm||May||Full/partial sun|
|New England aster||< 85cm||August-October||Full sun|
|Butterfly weed||< 75cm||June-August||Full sun|
|White snakeroot||30-90cm||July-October||Full/partial sun|
|Wild geranium||30-70cm||April-June||Full/partial sun|
|Corepsis lanceolata||30-60cm||May-July||Full/partial sun|
|Daffodil (large cup/trumpet varieties)||20-60cm||April-May||Full/partial sun|
|Bleeding heart||< 45cm||May-June||Partial sun|
|Wild garlic||15-20cm||April-June||Full/partial sun|
|Barren strawberry||< 20cm||May-June||Partial shade|
|Autumn Crocus||7-10cm||September||Full/partial sun|