Thursday, May 28, 2009

Oak House in Bloom

I was quite excited when Sherry and I received this email from Diane Genco and Gene Schaefer for inclusion in our town's entry in America in Bloom. Here's a garden that not only provides beauty, it provides a habitat for wildlife, and its also a waystation for Monarch butterflies!

Here's an excerpt of the email they sent to us:
We are listed as an official site for Monarch Waystation for Monarch Watch ( it means that we have all components needed for Monarch Butterflies, they need host plants for the caterpillars-milkweed and nectar plants for the butterflies. I hand harvest eggs from the milkweed, rear, release and tag the Monarchs for their flight to Mexico in the Fall). We have a shared garden space with our neighbors and their children have been actively involved in the Monarch release (as you can see by the photos that they provided).

We also are a National Wildlife Federation's Certified Wildlife Habitat™ since 2001.
This means that we have met the following criteria and have provided and will continue to provide elements for each of the following areas:

*Food Sources - For example: Native plants, seeds, fruits, nuts, berries, nectar
*Water Sources - For example: Birdbath, pond, water garden, stream
*Places for Cover - For example: Thicket, rockpile, birdhouse
*Places to Raise Young - For example: Dense shrubs, vegetation, nesting box, pond
*Sustainable Gardening - For example: Mulch, compost, rain garden, chemical-free fertilizer

In our garden we plant many native species- and the gardens look very different at different times of the year.
We have been working on the gardens for 22 years and still is a work in progress.

Diane and Gene have an "After Father's Day Rule", no more heavy garden work-just basic work and enjoy the garden.

What an great space to enjoy.

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