Pollinator's Perspective

Category Archives: Pollinators Perspective

Taking Over the World

To Take Over the World:  If one were to sit in a darkened laboratory creating the most invasive nasty plant one could create we would agree on the potential for at least three of those plants: Bush Honeysuckle, Kudzu and Callery Pear.  Yes, I said it, Callery Pear. Remember not so long ago- say the mid 1980’s when everyone had a Bradford Pear in their front yard, and every spring, during a heavy thunderstorm with high winds – they split?  Often sheering off 50% of the tree or more?  It was a big issue and one that needed to be corrected.  So our Horticultural industry went back to their fields and starting growing pear cultivars with better branching angles- stronger trees, tougher trees- ones that could handle our midwest wind storms.  Out of the fields marched Aristrocat, Whitehouse, RedSpire, Capital and others….worthy replacements for the weaker inferior cultivar known as the Bradford.  Now enter in the dark mad scientist scheming to take over the world.   What we did not know was all pear cultivars are self sterile- in other words they do not produce a viable seed- thus no natural reproduction.  Only the Bradford was in our communities previous – a self sterile, flowering ornamental tree with white spring flowers and great rich fall color. But, with the introduction of the newer better, stronger cultivars we introduced other self sterile cultivars. They too are only self sterile- ( the sinister plot reveled) they can cross pollinate- between other cultivars within the same species. Shazam!! Flowering pears of all sorts of origins and locations cross pollinating and producing a viable seed hidden in a tasty fruit morsel.  So, courtesy of our native pollinators and song bird species we now have flowering Callery Pears everywhere- and I mean everywhere!

So you think there is reason to doubt me?  Take notice in your drive in town or to work the high medians and right of ways over the next couple of days.  When you finish admiring all the white flowering trees along our highways and parks, be advised- those are the fruits of the mad scientist from the laboratory. Not hardly one of those have been planted by man- most everyone has come from the result cross pollinating and the introduction of another invasive species into our beautiful state of Missouri.

 

When the World Wearies, and Society ceases to satisfy- there is always the Garden.

 

Creating Community Awareness

Several members of our team enjoyed attending The Partners for Native Landscaping Workshop March 29 and 30 at the Danforth Plant Science Center.  Danforth has a 6 acre prairie that was seeded in 2015 and has been one of our native stewardship clients since spring 2018. The prairie is very important to the Danforth community as they are researching sustainable agriculture and view the prairie as a sustainable landscape. The prairie is coming along nicely with a high diversity of forbs, many grasses and an especially nice showing of blue sage last year. Simon Barker, Native Landscape Solutions principal, spoke about our stewardship efforts at Danforth on Friday night along with Dr. James Carrington, President of the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center, and one of the architects who designed the project. Simon also assisted with tours of the Danforth prairie, and presented on native garden installation and maintenance.  Malinda Walter, Native Landscape Solutions biologist/ecological specialist, assisted with tours on Saturday as she is the point person for field operations at Danforth.
A big highlight of the workshop was hearing Larry Weaner, renowned garden author.. His perspective on landscaping with natives was refreshing. He suggested that we should think of our garden as being on a vegetative trajectory, continually changing over time, with some species waning. He advocated for reducing maintenance by creating a dense groundlayer to suppress weeds and reducing disturbance in the landscape as much as possible by cutting rather than pulling weeds.
We enjoyed the workshop and were proud to participate and highlight our work on the prairie at Danforth.

Native Landscape Solutions in the News

It is hard to imagine that over the last eighteen months we have completed over 1000 acres of invasive species work.  Working with the US Corps of Engineers, National Forest Service, Missouri Department of Conservation, several small cities and home owner associations has been challenging, yet extremely rewarding.    Invasive species remediation is meaningful work for our NLS team. This is work into which we pour our hearts and souls.  This crucial work has not gone unnoticed. One of our most recent contracts is with the University of Missouri- St Louis. Check out the following story from St. Louis Public Radio about this important project!

 

http://news.stlpublicradio.org/post/umsl-aims-root-out-invasive-honeysuckle-campus#stream/0

Congratulations Alberici on 100 years of business. Thanks for Letting Us Be Part of Your Story

    

 

HOLY POLLEN!!!!!

On a recent stewardship visit on one of the St Louis Butterly Byway Project sites, our team decided the ragweed among others needed to be mowed in a classic height control mowing event. We often encounter excess weed chaff or seeds in our equipment radiators at the end of a mowing event. On some occasions, the pollen cycle is at its peak. Fortunately, neither of our team members suffer from severe hayfever.  So keep this in mind, the radiator is black.  Holy Pollen Folks!

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