Michigan native plants evolved with fire as a result of most of the state burning every 5-10 years in resettlement times. Fire returns nutrients to the soil, allows for more solar radiation to reach the ground which quickens spring green up, and can kill non native plants that did not evolved with fire. See this… Read more »
Tag: native plants
Don’t Cut Down Your Perennials
Leave up your perennials for the winter. Insects will overwinter in any that have hollow stems. The dense undercover provides places for things to hide. And leave up seed heads that are a source of food for birds.
First Year Prairie Planting
End of first year prairie planting I am doing on my neighbor’s property, gratis. There are nearly 4 acres back there, this is his back forty, and I get to play with 2k sq ft. Like first year prairie plantings, it looks like a weedy mess due to weed control which is to keep it… Read more »
Heron Preys in Wildlife Pond
Late fall, late afternoon sun as the heron stalks prey in my wildlife pond. Behind the rocks is a boggy area with Brown Fox Sedge and behind are Red Osier Dogwoods, and Switch Grass. Fall has beauty as well, if you move beyond what we are taught by Big Horticulture.
Hollow Stems Provide Overwintering Habitat for Insects
If you leave up your plants in the fall, you leave places for critters to overwinter. Some will do so in the hollow stems of plants. Cut them to the ground and you provide no place for certain species to hang out for the winter.
Buffalo Grass Lawn Gone Dormant
Buffalo grass being a warm season grass on the right has gone dormant for the winter compared to the traditional lawn on the right. In the spring I will burn the buffalo grass to give it a jump start.
Leave the Leaves
Leave the leaves. These beds of mine have filled with fallen leaves from surrounding trees. This provides cover for wildlife during the winter and improves soil.
Little Bluestem Along Walkway
Little Bluestem, Schizachyrium scoparium, lining a client’s front walkway. This grass’ ornamental value is best in the fall.
Witch Hazel Blooming in November
Witch Hazel, Hamemalis virginiana, is the very last thing to flower to my knowledge, often flowering well into November. Great shrub, small tree for sun to shade.
Fall Prairie Seeding
This quarter acre was seeded today for a wet prairie planting. Over the summer I killed the grass and fall sowings are best for seed germination in the spring. Seed is mixed with potting soil to bulk it up so an even sowing is possible.