All plants are not created equal.
Douglas Tallamy, as keynote speaker at the INPAWS conference noted in his program Gardening for Life. Botany is the backbone of biodiversity. Plants feed the insects at the bottom of the food chain, and without insects the biodiversity is dramatically altered.
Dr. Tallamy’s studies have illuminated the difference between native and non- native plants: bugs eat ‘em! And where you have bugs- you have birds, and frogs and salamanders- and all of the interesting creatures that eat those creatures.
Compare two trees:
· Beech, Fagus grandiflora a native, host of 127 different species of lepidoptera caterpillars (and the occasional Eastern Screech Owl as seen in my tree)
· Zelkova, the newly arrived Chinese replacement for our American Elm, supports 0 species of caterpillars.
Ask any hungry bird which tree they prefer in your yard.
If you are a fan of biodiversity, you’ll soon realize our healthy ecosystems depend on native plants. Societies like INPAWS, Wild Ones, Flora-Quest and many of our Ohio botanical groups are trying to get the word out. Much can be accomplished when we all work together for the common goal of preserving native species in our natural areas and promoting native plants in our landscapes. Let’s start one yard at a time.
*Note to regular readers*
Click on www.flora-quest.com/blogpage.html
You'll find the same great blog in a much nicer format! ~Weedpicker