I have been hearing about how important many blooming plants are for the ecosystem for years, good for our native pollinators, important for many types of beneficial insects ( parasistoids , predators , etc.) I never took it really seriously.
One day while mowing my very overgrown yard , the belt broke on my ridding mower.
I went in the house to get a spare belt and a beer, went back out and sat next to the mower on “the line” between mowed and unmowed and started to work on the mower.
While sitting there drinking a beer, that’s when I noticed that the unmowed section was ALIVE , wildflowers blooming, buzzing with insect life !
The mowed section was essentially dead. Like many / most suburban yards, a carpet of green with very little life.
It just took that one beer to change my mind about what I was doing. Since then I have a new respect for keeping and allowing to bloom many plants that I formally thought of as weeds.
I now try to mow on a rotational basis , allowing some areas to get tall , bloom, while mowing some areas infrequently, mowing paths mostly so I don’t get snake bit, ticks , etc. I live on a farm that is seldom seen by the public. Not trying to impress anyone here by a well mowed landscape.
In fact ,now I despise a so called , well mowed yard ! Just NO habitat there ! Likely one of the worst things a person could do to a piece of land, in my opinion. But it seems to be the accepted norm… to create a biological Desert around your house.
Sure you could see a tiger or snake out there before it attacks, but that’s usually not the case these days for most people.
The birds and insects. + pollinators are in decline world wide.
I believe this is due to many things ….
Destruction of habitats , mowing / herbicides.
Lack of understanding the whole concept,that many birds eat insects , feed their young on them,mowing / herbicides / weedeaters destroy the plants those insects eat.
No insects = No birds
A upper 90% of insects are beneficial, if not so ,we would be in trouble. As they outnumber us. Most people see insects as bad.
THEY FOR THE MOST PART ARE GOOD.!
In fact they are one of the important parts of our ecosystem.
With out them ,the world would be in serious trouble.
They , many of them , rely on nectar / pollen of plants,
Mostly native plants, so… it’s not that people have to plant plants for them, just don’t mow ALL the native plants down.
Sure ,add a few good plants too. To add diversity.
It’s important to have a continuous bloom all season to provide good habitat. So adding some different plants is good.
Making a nice sign for the yard that says …
Is easier than mowing the yard !
So… I encourage you to enjoy a beverage on “the line “
Between mowed / unmowed , pay attention !
,please chime in, what are your best plants for pollinators and beneficial insects ?
More on good plants , to follow …