Caring for the Pollinators

We have put a lot of care (and money) into creating a haven for the birds, bees, and butterflies out at our farm. We have several acres of native grasses and flowers and last year planted a swath out along the highway that curves around the northern border of the farm. The highway crew mistakenly mowed it flat in the fall. This year, though, we have put up signs to discourage mowing and spraying if the crew did not “get the memo.”

20170708_090935I think the vibrant bloom is enough to deter anyone thinking they should destroy it by now. In June, it sparkled with red poppies as well, although I don’t believe they are native. I just like seeing some red.

I know from experience that the mix of flowers will change, depending on the weather, the month, and the maturity of the root system. This may be the best year for the Brown-eyed Susan so we need to really appreciate them in the moment.

We think there is an invasive plant trying to get a foothold in the mix. It has a tall stalk, (in some cases 6 feet tall), and looks like it will develop a flower at the top. My husband thinks it is an invasive species called “mares tail” and we have started the exhaustive task of methodically pulling them out by the roots. I’m hoping we are not pulling up something we paid to have planted, but if our little garden is contributing to a problem for the farmers, we have to do our part to stop it.

20170708_091545Do any of you horticulturists out there know this plant? It will take us a week of 2-hour sessions to eradicate it so if it is a case of mistaken identity, I’d like to know sooner rather than later.


About bluestempond

Hobby farmer living at Bluestem Pond in Michigan.
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2 Responses to Caring for the Pollinators

  1. I recommend a call to either Fernwood or Love Creek, or a visit to either, for help with identifying plants. I love your blog.

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