I see what looks like a Bumblebee and a tiny Hummingbird in my yard, but when I look closely, the insects are hovering and drinking nectar through a straw (proboscis) rather than landing on the flower. They are daytime moths, and they are beautiful. Here are photos from my yard with tips of what you can plant this fall to attract them to your yard next spring.
When does Monarch migration peak in your area? Find your latitude and follow this chart.
You can help save Monarchs. Collect Milkweed Seed Pods and send them to Monarch Watch for habitat restoration next year. Follow these instructions. If you live in Ohio (and if not, encourage your state to have a similar program), collect Milkweed Seed Pods from 9/1 to 10/30. The Ohio Pollinator Habitat Initiative will use them to create more Pollinator Habitat across the state. Drop the Pods off at the nearest Pod Collection Center. For locations and instructions on how to handle the pods, see p.6 in the Urban Review.
Is it time for fall yard clean up? Wait and follow these tips to help our environment. Note that creating a brush pile helps Native Bees too. Our warm winter and wet spring were great for breeding ants. Ants plant seeds, aerate soil, help protect plants from predators and contribute to decomposition that creates fertile soil. Watch their trail, and if it leads into your house, try blocking the entry with petroleum jelly.
- Organic lawn care: You don't need to fertilize if you applied corn gluten, but you may apply composted poultry manure or other natural fertilizers from when it first turns cool (in Ohio, now until mid-November)
- Tips for Fall Yard Care
- Leave bird nesting material in your yard, like limb, leaf, fluff, moss, mud, 2-4" dry grass clipping and greenery (parts of plants)
- Clean bird feeders for winter: dip them in 10% Clorox 90% water, spray with water until all bleach is gone & completely air dry them to get rid of chlorine
- Follow Hummingbirds on their migration south to know when to take down your feeder. Males migrate first. Here is Ohio timing
- September is a better time than October to plant native trees and bushes because roots have more growing time
- How to plant a tree, see page 5 from The Urban Review
- Planting ideas: Common Ohio native trees, click on the green link to see photos and helpful information
- Douglas W. Tallamy, Bringing Nature Home, lists best bets on what to plant
- Help migratory birds by turning your outdoor lights off or on motion sensor 11:30pm-5am EST from mid-August through the end of October. Learn more at FLAP
Please send your backyard conservation educational event with a link the month prior to the registration deadline (e.g. May 1 for June issue)
- 9/3, September Sawmill Saturday, Sawmill Wetlands, Columbus
- 9/10, Ecosystem Services of Urban Forests, David Reutter, Wild Ones Columbus
- 9/16-18, Pawpaw Festival, Fee, Lake Snowden, Albany
- 9/24, Harvest Fair, family fun & nature exhibits, Fee, Delaware