Let's Amp up the Insect Activity and Seasonal Interest, Shall We?
Another two months (hopefully) and I'll start my work season again. Perhaps I'll even execute this small project below which is the topic of this post.
We're continuing from the last post and looking at three raised beds located in a condo courtyard somewhere in downtown Toronto. Here are bed number two's "before" picture and my proposal to makeover the small area to attract insects and birds while providing multi-seasonal visual interest for the condo owners who share the common paths and garden beds.
|A New Toronto Pollinator Garden Design Before|
The bed above contains many run-of-the-mill hostas so besides the one week in May the existing serviceberry (Amelanchier) shrub (small tree) blooms, there's very little nectar to attract bees and butterflies on a consistent basis from May to October. (It is true, though, that the serviceberry provides highly desirable berries in the summer. It's the best thing going on in this bed!)
Other things to note, if you're keeping notes, is that the bed faces west, receives full sun until late afternoon and is irrigated automatically. Zero manual maintenance occurs, besides the custodian occasionally shearing the evergreen yew macaron.
Here's my quick drawing below suggesting native species of perennials (besides the Coreopsis cultivar) which provide food energy for wildlife, look attractive to our eyes and require relatively fewer maintenance dollars (this last point is always important to a condo board.)
Here's the list of perennials:
|A New Toronto Pollinator Garden Design After|
I realize that not all the perennials will bloom at the same time as the drawing suggests but this is only a quick mock up for illustration purposes and to make it easier for these clients to visualize what the bed could look like, more or less, at any time during the growing season.
And, yes, that yew would be removed!