How to receive grant money for your community or school native plant garden project

By Kathy Bildner
Member, Wild Ones – St. Louis Chapter

Garden plan

Ethical Society garden plan

Wild Ones 2017 Grants
No matter what size or shape the garden project, Wild Ones of St. Louis is there to help with grant money.  We help pay for the native plants or seeds that will make the garden a wildlife haven for birds and insects. We help one garden at a time. We have been doing this since 2007. One of our recent meetings was at the Overland Historical Society grounds.  They were a grant recipient in 2007, one of our first. We have helped plant 36 gardens.

This year we have helped to fund six gardens: five schools and one community garden. We work with the students, teachers, principals, parents, and community gardeners. So far this year we have spent $1580. The fall season has just begun and we are waiting on more requests.

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Prepare for upcoming seed exchange and potluck gathering

By Marcia Myers
Blog Editor, Wild Ones – St. Louis Chapter

three women and seed packets

From left to right: Ann Early, Prem Barton, and Kathy Bildner at the 2016 seed exchange

Reminders:
Our annual potluck and seed exchange will be on Wednesday, November 1 with the potluck dinner beginning at 6:00 p.m. and the meeting at 7:00 p.m. in The Heights Community Center of Richmond Heights.

Having seeds to trade is encouraged, but not required. However, there’s still time to collect seeds for the exchange if you don’t have any prepared yet. Keep your seeds dry and put them in a labelled paper bag or envelope. Some people use plastic, as long as the seeds are completely clean and dry.

If you are new to native plants and will be receiving seeds, here’s a previous blog post that might help, Now that I have collected my native seeds, what’s next?

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Volunteers needed for Landscape Challenge planting on Sat., Sept. 30

By James Faupel
Vice-President and Chairperson Landscape Challenge
Wild Ones – St. Louis Chapter

Group of people with dirty hands from gardening

The 2015 “dirty hands” photo after planting completion

The 2017 Landscape Challenge planting day is almost here. This year’s property was chosen by representatives of Wild Ones – St. Louis Chapter and Grow Native! from among applications received from Bring Conservation Home participants in Clayton, Brentwood, Richmond Hts., Ladue, Olivette, and Maplewood. The winning property is in Brentwood.

Designer Rob May has been working with winning homeowner Marlene Becker, and Shaw Nature Reserve’s Scott Woodbury to create the design. Rob is a horticulture student at STLCC Meramec, and is the president of the Meramec Botanical Society. Marlene had recently joined Wild Ones and already has the passion for wanting to learn more about Missouri’s native flora. She is very excited about her new native garden plans, and she has already prepared the site! 

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What’s blooming in Besa’s yard? Seedbox

Blog and photos by Besa Schweitzer
Webmaster, Wild Ones – St. Louis Chapter

Two yellow flowers

Seedbox (Ludwigia alternifolia)

Plant name:
Seedbox (Ludwigia alternifolia)

Description:
Seedbox is a raingarden plant that provides good texture when planted with red and blue Lobelias and sedges.

This plant has excellent fall color and winter interest.

It grows about 2-feet tall and 3-feet wide.

It will self-seed but does not crowd out other plants in my experience.

Why I chose this plant:
I plant seedbox because of the seed head. It is a tiny box with a small hole for the dust-like seeds to sprinkle out of. The seed heads will persist through the winter and look very cute with their snow caps. Also, it provides structure for a raingarden to keep the soil covered. The red fall color is amazing.

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Remember to purchase tickets for the St. Louis Native Plant Garden Tour on Sept 16

Blog by Marsha Gebhardt
President, Wild Ones – St. Louis Chapter

Don’t miss out on the third annual St. Louis Native Plant Garden Tour on Saturday, September 16 from 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. Tickets are limited in order to provide a high-quality, educational tour of 10 gardens.

Remaining tickets (Tour booklets) can be purchased only at these four retail sites, which are increasingly emphasizing native plants in their inventories: 

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Arcadia native plant workshop Sat. Sept. 30

Blog by Linda Bennett
[In the Arcadia Valley, Linda and Bill Bennett have become local leaders in native landscape education and advocacy.]

Wild Ones members will be featured speakers in Arcadia’s second native plant workshop entitled, Native Plants & Pollinatorson Saturday, September 30, 2017 from 9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.

  • Dave Tylka will begin the day with Native Landscaping for Songbirds and Hummingbirds.
  • Ann Earley and Bob Siemer will follow with Wild for Monarchs.
  • Betty Struckhoff will speak on Designing with Nature in Mind.
  • We will end the day with a Q&A and panel discussion with Dr. Chad Follis, horticulture professor from Mineral Area College and some speakers from the day.

As an added bonus, Missouri Wildflowers Nursery will be selling plants throughout the day. Also, there will be information available from various nature-related organizations for attendees to peruse during breaks.

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What’s blooming in Fran’s yard? Blue lobelia

Blog and photos by Fran Glass
Secretary and Membership Chair, Wild Ones – St. Louis Chapter

Blue flowers

Blue lobelia (Lobelia siphilitca)

Plant name:
Blue lobelia (Lobelia siphilitca)
(also called blue cardinal flower or great lobelia)

Description:
This Missouri native perennial is clump-forming. It grows about two feet tall with showy flowers in August and September.

Why I chose this plant:
I so enjoy the beautiful blue color and unusual shape of the flowers.

Visitors:
Bumble bees

The Xerces Society guide, Attracting Native Pollinatorscalls it “an exceptional bumble bee plant.”

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2017 August monthly gathering highlights

Red brick building with open white door

Welcome to our August Gathering – Kevin King’s secret garden
Photo by Dawn Weber

August 2 and 5, 2017
Kevin King hosted two July yard tour gatherings. Thirty members and seven guests attended Wednesday evening August 2, and 16 members and two guests attended Saturday August 5. James Faupel made announcements on Wednesday, as did Marsha Gebhardt on Saturday.

Kevin built three town homes on Ann Avenue in the Soulard neighborhood of St. Louis. They are bookended by two flounder houses, which are rare mid-19th century, triangular type houses with windows on one side of the house.

Kevin is a strong supporter of urban renewal and of repurposing materials. The foundation and all the stone work from a pre-Civil War building were used on-site to build his homes’ stone columns, garage, and iron gate posts. He reused bricks from another project for his patio.

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Participation opens Fri Aug 18 for our 2017/2018 MDC seedling order

Wild Ones members wrap seedlings to give away at Earth Day

The seedling wrapping crew

By Dawn Weber
Board Member-at-Large, Wild Ones – St. Louis Chapter

Each year, the Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) offers Missouri residents a variety of tree and shrub seedlings for reforestation, windbreaks, and erosion control, as well as for wildlife food and cover.

MDC provides mainly one-year-old, bare-root seedlings. A few species are two years old, and they are noted as 2-0 in the pricing chart. The size of the seedlings varies greatly depending on the species, which are available in bundles of 10 and 25.

This year, MDC is opening up the seedling order period on September 1st, quite a bit earlier than in previous years, so we also need to start our process earlier, to have the best chance at getting the species that we want. 

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Last call for Native Plant Garden Tour early bird registration

There’s just a few days left for $15 early bird registration to our 2017 Native Plant Garden Tour on September 16.

After August 15, tickets will be $20 and only available at our four retail garden center partners:

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