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.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Bee Friendly Certification Program

Here is another great idea to get involved to help our pollinators.

Get certified as a Bee Friendly Farmer, Gardener, or School, and 
show your commitment to pollinator conservation!

Monday, April 23, 2012

The Great Sunflower Project

The great Sunflower Project is the world’s largest citizen science project focused on pollinator conservation.   I found out about it sometime last year.    The Mexican Sunflower is one of my favorite flowers in my yards for most of my butterflies.   They are a great Sunflower with a beautiful orange flower.   I found out about this project before I even got my bees.  I joined immediately!   

Here is the information:   

She will donate back 25% of your order to the Great Sunflower Project.  

I planted seeds in a seed tray earlier in the season and have planted them throughout my garden.  I am looking forward to seeing how many pollinators visit these flowers.  After the flowers bloom I need to sit in my garden for approximately 15 minutes and watch how many bees visit the flowers.  I report this data to the Great Sunflower Project.  It is equally important to report if no bees visit.  I can tell you from experience that pollinators love the Mexican Sunflower.  We will see how they like the Lemon Queen Sunflower. 
The Mexican Sunflower (Tithonia) is a lovely addition to my butterfly garden.  What I love about it is that the flowers last a long time, and blooms continually.  It also self germinates every season.  So I have volunteer plants popping up in my garden all the time.  I will keep you posted as the Sunflowers grow and bloom.  This is another example of a citizen’s science project that the whole family can participate in.  Let me know if you get involved.  

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