How I Got Started

I started Butterfly gardening many years ago. My yard has been a progression over the years, and has made many transformations. Twenty years ago I experienced Hurricane Andrew. My yard and house were destroyed. We decided not to replace the pool screening and open up the backyard and put in some landscaping. That was the official beginning of my love for gardening in South Florida. I added a beautiful water garden years ago, and have been adding host and larvae plants for pollinators, mostly for the butterfly, for as many years as I can remember. I had my yard certified as a Natural Habitat, through the National Wildlife Foundation. To have a natural habitat you need to provide and meet certain requirements: 1. Provide a food source, 2. Provide a water source, 3. Cover, 4. A place to raise young. I try not to use any pesticides in my yard. I vermicompost and recycle as many of my food scraps as possible. If I had more land I would have a huge compost bin to recycle all my yard cuttings. Basically, I try to lessen my carbon footprint on this earth. In my own little world or backyard I try to provide an ecosystem in my water garden, provide birdbaths, birdfeeders, hummingbird nectar sources, feeders, puddling areas, host plants and nectar plants for butterflies and other pollinators. I am hoping to raise everyone’s awareness of the importance of saving our Butterflies, Blooms & Bees. Without them our world and food source will be in trouble. I hope you all enjoy my journey. I am not a Master Gardener, or Master Beekeeper, an Entomologist, or Journalists. I am simply a Backyard Gardener who is trying to lessen her Carbon Footprint of this Earth.

I hope you enjoy my blogs.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Let’s Celebrate National Pollinator’s Week

June 18-24, 2012 has been designated National Pollinator Week by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. I have been looking forward to this week for several months. I wish that I could have gotten directly involved in promoting this week, but I am only one person. I know I am doing my individual part by my sustainable gardening that is attracting many pollinators to my garden. Maybe next year I can figure out how to actually organize an event during Pollinator’s Week.

I found out about National Pollinator’s Week by following the group, Pollinator’s Partnership. The Pollinator Partnership is the world’s largest organization dedicated exclusively to pollinator issues, supporting bees, butterflies, bats, birds, and more; and is working to reverse and prevent declines. Visit for more information about 2012 National Pollinator Week and how to celebrate. There are some events in the state of Florida but none in the Miami area. Maybe if we are able to organize a Miami Dade Beekeeping Association we might be able to increase community awareness in the future.

There are many ways to attract pollinators to your garden. Invite pollinators to your neighborhood by planting a pollinator friendly habitat in your garden, farm, school, park or just about anywhere! Become aware of your native plants for your area. Plant them in your garden. Decrease your use of pesticides and herbicides. They will kill the very pollinators that you are trying to attract to your garden. You can find out what plants to grow in your garden by going to the pollinator’s website. By inputting your zip code they inform you what plants are native to your ecoregion. Become involved in your Native Plant Society. Here is information for the Florida Native Plant Society;

There are many good books on the subject. Some of my recommendations are: “Attracting Native Pollinators: The Xerces Society Guide to Conserving North American Bees and Butterflies.” Xerces Society. “The Bee Garden: How to create or adapt a garden to attract and nurture bees.” Little, Maureen. “Bringing Nature Home: How you can sustain Wildlife with Native Plants” Tallamy, Douglas W. “Your Florida Guide to Butterfly Gardening” Daniels, Jaret C.

I have been attracting pollinators to my garden for many years. I started by adding plants to my garden that would attract butterflies, and hummingbirds. I expanded my pollinator garden by adding a bat house, native bee houses, and recently added honey bees. Like I say in the introduction to my blog, I am just a backyard gardener hoping to raise some awareness about the importance of saving our pollinators, of which many are endangered.

Get involved!!! Plant a pollinator garden. You might really enjoy watching all the different pollinators that visit.

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