What’s In Bloom Today?

Posted by & filed under Blazing star liatris, Butterfly Gardens, Native Plants, Nectar Plants, Rain Garden Plants, Rain Gardens, Uncategorized

Liatris spicata, commonly known as blazing star, is at the height of its bloom right now in Kansas City.     A native wet prairie perennial, blazing star is easily grown in average to medium soil that is well-drained. An excellent choice for rain gardens, blazing star tolerates moist soil during the summer, but will succumb …

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Patience Is the Key To A Successful Butterfly Garden

Posted by & filed under Beneficial insects, Black Swallowtail Butterfly, Butterfly Gardens, Design, design process, Designing for Butterflies, Insects, Landscaping, Native Plants, Nectar Plants, Uncategorized

One of my favorite things to do this summer is to quietly sit on my deck, watching dozens of butterflies floating through the yard enjoying the nectar buffet I’ve planted. This is the first year that I’ve had a steady stream of visitors and it feels like the time, effort and money I’ve put into …

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Invite An Insect: Black Swallowtail Butterfly

Posted by & filed under Beneficial insects, Black Swallowtail Butterfly, Butterfly Gardens, Host Plants, Insects, Native Plants, Naturalizing, Nectar Plants, Pollinator Gardens, Sustainability, Uncategorized

Whether you are planting to attract butterflies, bees or a host of other native pollinators, finding out which specific plants are the best to include can be complicated. In order to help you design your pollinator garden, I have pulled together a list of some beneficial insects and their related plants. Look for “INVITE AN …

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“Bee-Friending” Insect Populations

Posted by & filed under Bees, Beneficial insects, Insects, landscape management, Native Grasses, Native Groundcover, Native Plants, Native Shrubs, Native Trees, Naturalizing, Nectar Plants, Predatory Insects, Sustainability, Sustainable Landscaping, Uncategorized, Urban Landscaping

  Insect populations around the world are rapidly declining. Within the next 20 years, 40% of the earth’s insect species may be extinct and within 100 years insects could disappear completely.   Insects are the foundation of the planet’s ecosystems. When just one type of insect disappears, dozens of other species, including humans, are directly …

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Plant A Patch: Foxglove Penstemon — (Penstemon digitalis)

Posted by & filed under Butterfly Gardens, Foxglove Penstemon, Native Plants, Naturalizing, Nectar Plants, Uncategorized

  If you are looking for the perfect plant for your evening garden, this native perennial fits the bill. Easy to grow, native penstemon prefers well-drained soil in the full sun or in partial shade. It’s restrained clump-like growth pattern does well in borders or works for naturalizing. White, trumpet shaped flowers on 30 inch …

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The Not So Secret Life of Bees — Part Two, Designing for Bees

Posted by & filed under Bees, Design, Garden Design, Gardens, Native Plants, Nectar Plants, Uncategorized

The more I read about bees and their relatives, wasps and flies, the more fascinated I become with these tiny powerhouses and the more I understand why people are so passionate about providing for them and protecting them.As we mentioned in last week’s blog, honeybees may be the most well-known bee, but it is certainly …

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Plant A Patch: Copper Iris (Iris fulva)

Posted by & filed under Clay Soil, Copper iris, Gardens, Native Plants, Naturalizing, Nectar Plants, PerenniaLs, Rain Garden Plants, Rain Gardens, Rainscaping, Sustainable Landscaping

  A perfect plant for use in a rain garden or as a water plant , the copper iris takes its name from its unique reddish-copper color blooms which appear in May and June.Small plants, they typically reach about 2 feet in height. They love full sun, but will tolerate part shade if planted in …

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Plant A Patch – Barbara’s Buttons (Marshallia caespitosa)

Posted by & filed under Barbara's Buttons, Butterfly Gardens, Gardens, Landscaping, Native Plants, Nectar Plants, PerenniaLs, Sandy Soil, Silty Soil, Uncategorized

    This diminutive native perennial features fragrant pinkish white blooms, somewhat reminiscent of pincushion flowers, on leafless, upright stems in late spring. A small plant, rarely more than 6 – 8 inches, it is perfect for rock gardens or the front of beds. Barbara’s buttons are drought tolerant, prefer full sun and dry, sandy …

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Plant A Patch: Hollowstem Joe Pye Weed (Eutrochium fistulosum)

Posted by & filed under Butterfly Gardens, Gardens, Landscaping, Native Plants, Nectar Plants, Sustainable Landscaping

        Joe Pye Weed, long thought of as just a roadside weed, is finally coming into its own! This tall (4 – 7 feet) native thrives in moist to wet soil and full sun to partial shade. Fragrant pinkish-purple blooms which attract dozens of species of butterflies appear in July and continue …

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Plant A Patch: Mountain mint (Pycnanthemum muticum)

Posted by & filed under Butterfly Gardens, Gardens, Mountain mint, Native Plants, Naturalizing, Nectar Plants, PerenniaLs, Sustainability, Uncategorized

  Offering pinkish-white late summer blooms and winter structural interest, this fragrant native perennial prefers full sun and fertile, medium moist soil. Mountain mint grows in a clump form, often reaching 3 feet in both width and height. It spreads more slowly than other mints and is excellent for naturalizing. When crushed, the dense, dark …

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