IJ Clipping CropIt wasn’t long ago I was struck with one of my many wild ideas to start a non-profit supporting pollinator gardens. I was convinced then, and still am, that if we work together to create gardens with pollinators in mind — planting for bees, butterflies, hummingbirds as well as other animals — our patchwork of gardens and unused spaces could weave together to create a blanket of habitat.

But I was immediately mind boggled when I began the task of researching what it would take to put this together, realizing the breadth of my ambition. Fundraising, public relations and the shear effort of organizing people, materials and landscapes was enough to make my half-full glass overflow with more than wild abandon. So, I stayed close to home and decided to start with what was immediately at hand. The school gardens I manage, gardens of clients, friends and my plantings at home.

What better? Why make something so perfectly simple daunting? Inspiration to plant and grow was redirected back to my original  to-do list but with greater focus and direction.

IJ Blog Image Kids NEWThe plant list for the garden you see above started with kids and natives. Native plants — pollinator plants — are, in many cases, self-managing and ripe habitat for animals and children. A welcome invitation for bug hunts, butterflies and curiosity. Fodder for something special.

I branched out to include drought tolerant non-natives, also pollinator favorites, some of them jacks-of-all-trades. Attracting animals and multiplying their benefits with their modest but stunning beauty.

Except for the occasional basketball bouncing through or child racing headlong to avoid being tagged this garden has success written all over it. Fingers crossed it catches on.

Spread the love. Grow something. Pass the pistil.

Emily Murphy

*Click here to read the full article about Emily Murphy and the Strawberry Point School pollinator garden.

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