Our Planting Day efforts are bearing flowers! And the bees are all abuzz. Here are some photos taken by a recent visitor to The Patch.
Black-eyed Susan (Rudbeckia hirta): This annual and/or short-lived perennial wildflower is a prairie ecosystem native and often pops up in meadows without any help from humans. It is beloved by pollinators of all persuasions, and seed-eating birds happily devour its ripe seed heads. When you visit, look carefully at the dark center of the plant. Often you’ll spot a spider laying in wait for unsuspecting pollinators. Everybody’s gotta eat.
Annual Blanket Flower (Gaillardia pulchella): These native annuals were planted by volunteers on the April 14 Planting Day held this year. They will bloom all growing season, which is appreciated by all pollinators, and their abundant seeds will provide food for hungry birds while leaving enough to sow themselves on the site for next year.
Ox-eye Daisy (Leucanthemum vulgare): This is a non-native species introduced from Europe that, according to ecologists, is causing problems in some areas by out-competing native wildflowers. We admit that it is pretty, so we’re watching its behavior on our site. If it begins to appear aggressive, we will remove these interlopers and replace them with suitably adapted native flowers.