I find March to be the most dreamy of the months, starting seeds for the year's garden, watching the trees come into bud, the very first flowers start to emerge. I've been planning my garden this year and along with plump juicy tomatoes I'm also starting a selection of native wildflowers to entice bees and butterflies to my garden. Why native wildflowers?
The importance of growing plants native to your region. There are many reasons to grow natives: adapted pollinators, water & erosion control, and they become low maintenance once established.
The Circle of Life
Plants, animals, birds, and insects have all evolved together to their native climates to work to benefit each other - the pollinators pollinate the plants so the plants will fruit, the fruit then feeds the birds, rabbits, deer, and other animals, and the circle of life continues.
Why You Should Care About Pollinators
Let's start at the very beginning...
Other Benefits From Planting Native Plants
The Argument For Non-native Plants
Not all non-native plants are bad, there's a lot to be said for plants adapting to a new area - and cases where wildlife can thrive due to the introduction.
I, however, would be sad to see the individuality of each region get watered down by having the same plants everywhere, losing the "only in Ohio can you find" charms of the area.
Where to get such plants.
Remember: taking plants or seeds from parks/wildlife areas/wildlife preserves without a permit is illegal and can harm the delicate ecosystem in that area (it's also totally a jerk move and unethical).
A great resource to find the best native plants (Ohio) for you can be found at the Ohio Department of Natural Resources site here.
Discover new and interesting things about the world around you.
Emily is an Ohio Certified Volunteer Naturalist who spends her time exploring and learning about the unique history and nature in North East Ohio. She lives with her fiancé and cat in Wooster where she also works at a bookstore and grows and cans her own vegetables. When she's not doing that, yoga and embroidery (not at the same time) are other things she enjoys.