Additional native plant sales

Shopper at the fall wildflower sale at Shaw Nature ReserveWhile we hope you’ll come to the Wild Ones booth at the Spring Wildflower Market at Shaw Nature Reserve, here are some other options:

Missouri Wildflowers Nursery at Kirkwood Farmers’ Market
When: April 4, 11, 18, 25, May 2, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Where: Kirkwood Farmers’ Market, 150 East Argonne (Google Map)
MWN will be at Kirkwood Market with a collection of their wonderful Missouri natives. Order by Wednesday from their catalog and they will bring your order to the market for you to pick up.

Olivette in Bloom plant sale
When: Saturday, April 25, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Where: Stacy Park Pavilion, Old Bonhomme Rd. just south of Olive (Google map)
Plants supplied by Missouri Wildflowers Nursery. Great prices!
More info: www.olivetteinbloom.org

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Native Days at Sugar Creek Gardens – April 7-10

Sugar Creek talks & events

Click for a listing of Sugar Creek talks & events

By Betty Struckhoff

Spring is in the air and our spirits turn to digging in the dirt. Sugar Creek Gardens in Kirkwood wants to help fire our imaginations and supply some planting material.

Ann Lapides at Sugar Creek has noted surging demand for native plants from her customers, and is responding by stocking plenty of Missouri natives this spring. Check out some of their offerings. She has asked WIld Ones to help further educate her customers, and we have responded. Here are some upcoming events: Continue reading

The Chickadee’s Guide to Gardening

Entomologist and wildlife ecologist Doug Tallamy is at his best in a recent OpEd piece in the New York Times entitled, The Chickadee’s Guide to Gardening: In Your Garden, Choose Plants That Help the Environment.

Courtney Wotherspoon drawing of a bird in a tangle of plants

Image by Courtney Wotherspoon

OXFORD, Pa. — I GREW up thinking little of plants. I was interested in snakes and turtles, then insects and, eventually, birds. Now I like plants. But I still like the life they create even more.

Plants are as close to biological miracles as a scientist could dare admit. After all, they allow us, and nearly every other species, to eat sunlight, by creating the nourishment that drives food webs on this planet. As if that weren’t enough, plants also produce oxygen, build topsoil and hold it in place, prevent floods, sequester carbon dioxide, buffer extreme weather and clean our water. Considering all this, you might think we gardeners would value plants for what they do. Instead, we value them for what they look like.

When we design our home landscapes, too many of us choose beautiful plants from all over the world, without considering their ability to support life within our local ecosystems.

Last summer I did a simple experiment at home to measure just how different the plants we use for landscaping can be in supporting local animals. I compared a young white oak in my yard with one of the Bradford pears in my neighbor’s yard. Both trees are the same size, but Bradford pears are ornamentals from Asia, while white oaks are native to eastern North America. I walked around each tree and counted the caterpillars on their leaves at head height. I found 410 caterpillars on the white oak (comprising 19 different species), and only one caterpillar (an inchworm) on the Bradford pear.

Was this a fluke? Hardly. The next day I repeated my survey on a different white oak and Bradford pear. This time I found 233 caterpillars on the white oak (comprising 15 species) and, again, only one on the Bradford pear.

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March meeting minutes

PROGRAM

Kim Young from Forrest Keeling Nursery talks to Wild Ones about the state of the native plant movement

Kim Young, Forrest Keeling Nursery

Forty-six members and guests attended a presentation by Kim Young of Forrest Keeling Nursery at The Heights community center of Richmond Heights.

Kim gave examples why the native plant movement is growing.  The following initiatives are driving native plant sales.

  • LEED, or Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design, is a green building certification program that recognizes best-in-class building strategies and practices
  • Sustainable Sites Initiative is a program based on the understanding that sustainable landscapes create ecologically resilient communities that benefit the environment, property owners, and regional communities and economics.

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Restoration Underway at Creve Coeur Lake Park

Aerial map of the Mallard Lake restoration projectLate last year St. Louis Wild Ones agreed to be listed as a partner on St. Louis Audubon’s application for a Missouri Department of Conservation Community Conservation Grant for a project in Creve Coeur Park. In November, Audubon received word that the project had been selected for funding to the sum of $20,000.

Additionally, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is assisting through the Urban Wildlife Conservation Program with a goal to connect urban residents with nature. Funds will be used to convert turf to prairie and reconstruct woodland habitat near Mallard Lake in Creve Coeur Park. Mallard Lake is located south of Page Avenue and east of Creve Coeur Mill Road.

Volunteers needed
The public can assist with the project
at two upcoming community volunteer days to remove invasive bush honeysuckle on March 14 and April 11 near Mallard Lake, from 9 a.m. to noon. Volunteers will meet on the north side of the Lakehouse Restaurant (Google map). All ages are welcome, but those under 18 must be accompanied by an adult. All tools and supplies will be provided. Registration is encouraged, but not required. To register, contact Mitch Leachman at mitch@stlouisaudubon.org or (314) 599-7390. Continue reading

“Gardening Is A Verb” – collection of Cindy Gilberg’s essays

Gardening Is A Verg - book cover of a collection of essays by Cindy GilbergA collection of essays Cindy Gilberg wrote for the Native Plant School newsletter, The Gateway Gardener, The Healthy Planet, and other publications have been re-published in a new book, “Gardening Is A Verb.”

The book is available for $12 at the Shaw Nature Reserve and Missouri Botanical Garden bookstores. Copies will also be available at our meeting Wednesday night.

Read a review by Jean Ponzi.

The Webster Groves Garden Club

Webster Groves Garden Club members packing tree seedlings for distribution to first graders in the Webster Groves School District

Webster Groves Garden Club members packing tree seedlings for distribution to first graders in the Webster Groves School District

By Elizabeth Mattingly, Vice President of The Webster Groves Garden Club

Formerly The Men’s Garden Club of Webster Groves, we are a diverse organization and welcome individuals who love to garden. We usually meet on the second Monday of each month at 7:30 pm at the Webster Groves Recreation Center. Here is our 2015 meeting schedule:
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