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USFWS Northeast Regional Office
May 20, 2009
Pollinator Garden

July Update

The Pollinator Garden at the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Northeast Regional Office was planted on May 20, 2009. Before planting could begin, the Pollinator Garden Planning Team developed a list of plants native to the Connecticut River Valley to use in their garden. The team used the North American Pollinator Protection Campaign’s Ecoregional Planting Guide to select a list of native plants that would attract pollinators for the garden. Some were provided by staff, that already had them growing their yard, and others were purchased from several local native plant nurseries.
Native plants ready for planting
TIP: Native plant exchanges are common in some areas. Contact your local Native Plant Society for more information.
Preparing the Garden
Loosening the soil
Loosening the soil
Before planting began, the team loosened the soil in the garden, and provided a 2 inch layer of composted horse manure.
The planting design
Plants arranged for planting within colored chalk lines
A team member who has professional landscaping experience used the list of plants to draw a color coded plan for the garden. Then, the colors were transferred to the ground as a planting guide, using spray cans of chalk.
TIP: Place multiple individuals of the same type of plant together.
Selecting plants
Then, the team invited everyone in the office to celebrate warm weather and come outdoors, and help plant the garden.
Selecting plants

It only took a few hours to get all the plants settled into their new home.

Planting the garden

Planting the garden
Since the weather was hot and dry in late May, the team watered the plants for the first two weeks. After that, the area received abundant rain, and the new plants were mulched. Team members can be found at lunch time pulling stray weeds.

Providing nesting habitat for bees

Making bee blocks

During the event, one team member built bee blocks for staff to take home and use in their yards.

TIP: For information on how to build your own bee block, watch our video, or read instructions. Click here.


Part of the Pollinator Garden Team: from left:
Sue Fuller, Willa Nehlsen, Gale Hubley, Peg LaBonte,Tom Geser. Missing from photo are team members: Shelley Small (she took the photo), Christine Beauregard, Will Waldron, and Bill Zinni.
June 10, 2009 (3 weeks after planting)
The garden on June 10, 2009
Moss phlox (Phlox subulata)
A few weeks later, the team checked their plants, and a few had begun to flower.
We expect moss phlox (Phlox subulata) to attract a variety of butterfly, moths, and bee pollinators.
Foxglove Beardtongue
TIP: Find out what type of plants attract various groups of pollinators at: Click
The tubular flowers of foxglove beardtongue attract long-tongued bees, including honeybees, bumblebees, Anthophorine bees, miner bees, mason bees, and large leaf-vutting bees. The caterpillars of the moth Chalcedony midget (Elaphria chalcedonia) feed on the foliage of this and other beardtongues.
Check back next month for an update on our garden.
Northeast Regional Office Garden – July 2009



Our garden in Hadley, MA, is doing very well, with lots of plants flowering this month and a lot of POLLINATOR visits!

Pearl crescent butterfly (Phyciodes tharos) on Black-eyed Susan (Rudbeckia hirta)

Bees (a bumblebee on the left, and a megachile on right) collecting nectar and pollen on swamp milkweed (Asclepias incarnata)

Look at all the yellow pollen this bee (Halictus lagatus) on purple coneflower (Echinacea purpurea) has collected!


FUN FACT: Bees have special hairs they use to carry pollen called scopa.

Scarlet beebalm (Monarda didyma) flower


Other plants flowering in our garden this month include: scarlet beebalm (Monarda didyma), blazing star (Liatris spicata.) and joepyeweed (Eupatorium maculatum)

Blazing star (Liatris spicata.)


Last Updated: September 9, 2009