We use this area for off leash dog walking. Its been here at least five years maybe seven+ since a huge new shopping area of big box stores. Behind the stores is this huge field and pond. This year I am taking the trimmings and seeds of some local natives from my yard and leaving them here to help the natives fill in. But I found some nice ones already there. The whole field was mowed in late summer seems as a five (7-10) year required upkeep. First pic is a shallow area the light green area near the outlet is wet enough to now have a huge stand of cattails.
stormwater management area
That's a nice big canvas just waiting to be filled in with natives. Good for you, Sally!
I knew that Wolf Trap Farm Park (also known as Filene Center) had filled in a drainage area with native plants, but didn't know that North Creek Nurseries had played a major role in this initiative until I saw this: http://www.northcreeknurseries.com/index.cfm/fuseaction/news.detail/recID/85/index.htm
This is another great example of how easily an ugly drainage area can be converted to a pollinator garden.
Hmmm... I'm liking the Eryngium that's allegedly planted there...I might have to take a walk over there tomorrow.
This message was edited Nov 7, 2014 6:21 PM
That's a great sounding project, Muddy. And it's two years along now. They've probably got some interesting observations by now.
I like that Pearly Everlasting, and I see that it's a host plant for the American Painted Lady caterpillar and deer resistant. Hmm, I wonder if there are seeds left on those plants?!
I keep meaning to see what's growing at Wolftrap, because if it's growing, it's deer-resistant. It's a whopping .6 miles from my house; I have no excuses for not wandering over there more often.
I 'think' that's pearly everlasting, and I 'think' I also have a couple pearly everlasting I have been growing in my shade garden. I'll keep you in mind...
In late winter, I took lots of seeds that Muddy1 gave me from her wildflower collecting, and we roughed up the ground in a few places and sprinkled them in. But when things stared to grow it's been almost impossible to see what might be the new seeds. What seemed bare, grew in too quickly and uniformly to seem like y seeds. Maybe in late summer we'll see a little different bloom in that spot...One place that I seeded and then covered with fresh straw did seem to have new seedlings of one type.
The other day I used dog walking as an excuse to take a bag of Jerusalem artichoke tubers and plant them. They were sprouting in my fridge, so I think they have a pretty good chance. If they do, there will be no mistaking them! I also planted a small pot of black eyed susans/coreopsis NOID of which I have lots, and which I think I originally got from seeds off the bike trail (reclaimed rail path). One more- a clump of Carex greyi- that I just gave a good pitch and plopped right at the edge of the standing water in the drainage area.
I know the feeling! There are a lot of plants coming up in my forest plot, and I'm pretty sure some of them are from seeds I sowed, but I won't know until they bloom, or until I take the time to ID them by their leaves.
I'm sure you'll recognize something that blooms this summer, and you know what was there last fall so you'll be able to spot the new things.
This photo is of another area in which I sowed thousands of seeds. Milkweed had been planted there after construction work was completed, so I don't know for sure that these MW are "mine", but I like to think they are. Sadly, there are also thousands of what looks like Mimosa seedlings, courtesy of a nearby tree.
Edited to say that I think this is MW; I didn't want to wade through the dense grass to take a close look.
This message was edited Jun 13, 2015 8:00 PM
I can't quite tell. It doesn't seem exactly like common milkweed to me, but maybe another type. My common milkweed is just starting to bloom.
I have loads of fleabane in bloom, I'll be trying to cut those stems before too many seeds fly, and take them to the field.
It could be Asclepias incarnata; I had lots of those seeds from my own plants. Mine aren't blooming yet, but they don't get quite as much sun and water.
Fleabane is so pretty. I collected the seed heads from mine a few weeks ago.
Fleabane is so pretty...
There's a lot of this blooming right now. None on my property, though. When I just started learning the names of plants, I asked a friend if she had Fleabane in her flower patch as there was a similar flower in there. I think I offended her by her reaction. It isn't a very pretty name. :)
Perhaps she would prefer "Erigeron": https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Erigeron
According to Wiki, the name Fleabane "is derived from the belief that the dried plants repelled fleas. The generic name Erigeron is derived from the Greek (eri = early; geron = old man), a reference to the appearance of the white hairs of the fruit soon after flowering."
So, she can take her pick of alternate names: Erigeron, "repels fleas", or "early on, looks like an old man" : - )
Fleabane is still blooming, it keeps adding new side shoots down the 4-5 foot tall stems. The oldest flowers really hang on to their petals till the bitter end. Now that those are starting to let seeds fly, I have cut a lot of stems and bagged them to take over to the field.
We've had good rain and I'm sure my Jerusalem artichokes are happy.
That field will be so beautiful when things start blooming! Have you spotted anything growing from seeds that you sowed?
I will try to get a look in the area where I planted, I'll have to look carefully for things that seem unlike the rest of the plants.
My van is getting a good dose of fleabane seeds..need a bigger bag, or an old pillowcase.
Thanks, sorry, I didn't know this foliage pic was so bad before posting. It is knee to thigh high, very plentiful along the gravel roadbed through the area.. Last time we went, we found on this plant at least five orange fuzzy caterpillars. Mark has pics of them on his phone.
took a black eyed susan (NOID, as I recall came from seeds along B and A Trail many years ago, so i hope it is native) and one of Muddy's new england asters, and planted them (in the rain) along the path where we can keep an eye on them. Threw some other sedge (small with thin leaves, loaded with seeds) in the drainage area.
( using this to keep notes, so please don't feel you have to be excited about this particular minor event, lol)
I'm excited to hear that one of the NE Aster seedlings I just couldn't bear to throw on the compost heap has a new lease of life : - )
It would be a waste of my time to plant them in the forest near me because deer would eat them.
eek, we see deer tracks here too, but hopefully, they won't notice this one newcomer until he's spread some seeds. Nothing else along the trail is obviously browsed...tho I must take a better look.
I think it's in the "somewhat deer resistant" range, so maybe they'll leave it alone in your area. Fingers crossed!
Darn. They mowed 'my' field again!.
At least the jerusalem artichokes, and one large patch of seeds, went in unmown area.
How annoying!! Judging from Chillybean's description of how prairie restoration is done, however, that mowing might actually help the native perennials (by preventing undesirable plants from setting seed, I think).
I will cling to that hope , that there is environmental reasoning behind it! thank you, Muddy and Chillybean.
I know how disappointing it must be! There were lots of native plants growing in one of the areas where I sowed seeds until a survey crew flattened them by parking their vehicles there. I haven't had the heart to take a close look ; - (
nuts, they mowed where the Jerusalem artichokes were too.
If you can find where the JAs were you can still dig the tubers.
Good thought- but next to impossible at this stage. I'd be looking for stubs, and I put them in many place with no landmarks.
I just dug and disposed of one last little tuber in my garden.
The tubers should survive the winter, right? Then you can dig some up next year.