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View Diary: Action: Plant Milkweed Seeds (74 comments)

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  •  Nice! (28+ / 0-)

    There are a lot of reasons (not only monarchs) for having native plantings in every yard. Sara Stein's books (Noah's Garden, and Planting Noah's Garden) were an inspiration to me.

    We have large areas of our property that are "native" with many prairie plants and milkweed comes up here and there. Once it's established, it will be a long-term feature--milkweed has very deep taproots and you can't really get rid of it. And you can harvest your own seeds in the fall, and share them with neighbors!

    Here in Nebraska it seems that farmers (at least some) are aware of this problem. When we bike on paths that go past fields, we often see clumps of milkweed that the farmer has carefully left standing, on the edges of the field or even in among the crops.

    What would be best is if people would plant "native habitat" areas, like a clump of plantings near the edge of the property, or a hedgerow along fields. These habitat areas would include shrubs with woody stems as well as nectar plants, milkweed and other plants beneficial to native bees. If everyone did just a little of this, the result would be extremely beneficial to wildlife and hence to us. And, wildlife plantings look very pretty.

    Where in the Constitution does it say: "...on behalf of corporate interests" ???

    by sillia on Sun Nov 24, 2013 at 06:44:40 AM PST

    •  We have a small stretch of woods and a wildflower (13+ / 0-)

      area in a revine that bounds our yeard.  Many suburban yards have areas along fence lines.  I've already sent emails to the other science teachers in my school, and it's a go with them.  

      Even though we know which milkweed plants would be best for out area, we're going to create a webquest for the kids to do the research and make this their own way to make a difference.  I love middle schoolers' idealism and energy!

      Plutocracy (noun) Greek ploutokratia, from ploutos wealth; 1) government by the wealthy; 2) 21st c. U.S.A.; 3) 22nd c. The World

      by bkamr on Sun Nov 24, 2013 at 08:12:23 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Certified Backyard Wildlife Habitat (6+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Ice Blue, Joieau, sillia, bkamr, greengemini, KenBee

      Available here in Oregon through Audubon, available in other states, including Maryland. Planting w/native plants to provide homes and food for native insects, birds, etc.

      •  Out here in the southern appalachian (9+ / 0-)

        "wilderness" there are several programs to encourage maintenance and non-harvest of native wild species (like ginseng and black cohosh and goldenseal, now endangered by poaching because the herb market pays well). I have an entire mountainside in black cohosh, haven't yet taken advantage of the program that would pay me not to harvest. I only dig what I use, maybe one or two plants a year. Have been moving and planting ginseng for 20 years into better, more manageable locations. Some of my Mama 'Sangs are more than 25 years old and produce dozens of seeds a year.

        So far wild bees and kept bees are doing well still, there's no Big Ag bullshit around here because the mountains aren't conducive to intensive GMO monocropping. And there's a big organic movement here as well, thus organized resistance.

        Main problem is in the "breadbasket" plains states where ADM, et. al. monocrop chemically for millions of square miles. Not hopeful that can be reversed with backyard plantings, but you never know...

        •  Thanks, Joieau (5+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          bkamr, marina, greengemini, Joieau, KenBee

          In Portland,  (definitely urban, though I'm from Md. and love the Appalachian mountains), it is close to the norm to have gardens, rather than manicured lawns, and people are eager to plant with natives, so I believe it does make a difference. I hope the idea of native plantings expands rapidly, as people realize what's happening to the natural world.

    •  One private owner of a good chunk of (5+ / 0-)

      virgin land is probably the railroads. While I'm not encouraging you to trespass but you can look along railways if you want to see what the land looked like before it was developed.

      Any jackass can kick down a barn, but it takes a good carpenter to build one.--Sam Rayburn

      by Ice Blue on Sun Nov 24, 2013 at 09:46:16 AM PST

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      •  We have very active prairie groups (5+ / 0-)

        in the Midwest. In my area there are landowners/farmers who have pieces of virgin prairie (usually at the corner of ag fields where it was always awkward, even with horses, to plow). Many of these areas are quietly being put into trust to save them for the future. Audubon owns a huge acreage near here with virgin prairie and many public events to raise awareness. There are still ruts there in the earth from the Oregon trail.

        Wherever there are areas unsuitable for agriculture you can find native prairie plants. I have gathered seeds from along roadsides--there are some landowners who won't allow the county to spray the roadsides so native plants  can flourish. These areas are more or less public access, not private property, so they are a good source for collecting seeds.

        Where in the Constitution does it say: "...on behalf of corporate interests" ???

        by sillia on Sun Nov 24, 2013 at 10:29:39 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  in parts of Illinois and Wisconsin (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        greengemini, bkamr

        the only major prairie remnants are located along railroad right of way because the railroad was built before row crop development.  The old practice,  before herbicides were developed, was to burn along the tracks to keep woody growth from obstructing the line of sight.  The fire adapted prairie plants thrived.  Of course now that fire management has been replaced by herbicides,  the remainder of these remnants are slowly being lost. The exception being a few areas located next to forest preserves and other public open space.

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