Ahhh…January Garden planning…where all is possible and there is time for everything; where all of our plants look just as beautiful as they do in the pictures in seed catalogs and websites, and we have forgotten what slugs can do to our seedlings just overnight. Yes, it’s dreaming time!
I set aside time last weekend to sit and feel into what I want for the farm this coming year and one theme or picture became clear. I feel a strong desire to deepen my relationship and knowledge of the insects, beetles, birds, amphibians, and all other beings that harvest the bounty of the farm here alongside us. In order to pursue this desire I plan to grow many more flowers this year. Both native and non native as well as annuals and perennials, flowers feed the ecology in my neighborhood and I want to learn more about them. I want to not only sit and take a few photos of the bees I see harvesting nectar and pollen, but really get to know them better. Who are they? Where do they lay eggs and make their babies? What are they eating? What do they need to feel safe here and make a home? What can I provide for them to ease their burden?
I have read many “10 best plants for Pollinators” lists and checked out numerous books from the library about pollinator friendly gardening but I have not spent the time really getting to know the many species of bees and beetles and spiders and butterflies myself. I will for sure use these lists to trial many new plants, but I will also commit to sitting still and watching. Walking quietly through the beds at different times of the morning, day, and evening to see who is there and what they are doing. I will get out those field guides and really look at colors on abdomens and markings on thoraxes to differentiate the many many species of creatures we call “bees”.
I will share the many flowers I am trialing and learning about through this newsletter and social media. I plan to offer a Pollinators in your Garden workshop on the farm so I can talk about what I am learning and bring in an expert to sit with us to share more. I see so many flowers in our future!
As you plan your garden I hope you take a moment to look through the updated Wild Dreams Farm and Seed Website. And while you are there I hope you find seeds for new and interesting plants or an old favorite that you can’t wait to grow again. Perhaps you too can add in a few extra flowering plants to try and feed the ecology around us. I have several perennial flowers on offer this year like Anise Hyssop that feeds the bees and Scarlett Sage that were covered in hummingbirds last Summer. Many of the culinary and medicinal herb plants are wonderful pollinator attractors as well. So happy garden dreaming to you.