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Backyard Birding

By: Stacey Wildberger – October 2016

There are many reasons people choose to feed birds and create bird-friendly habitats in their own backyards: from aesthetics, connecting children with nature, and conservation, or just personal enjoyment of birds. While placing a few feeders around your yard is a good start, birds require more than just seed provided in a feeder. They need food, water, shelter and “greening”.

Did you know that 96% of birds rely on insects to raise their young, and it takes more than 5,000 caterpillars to raise one clutch of chickadees?! By growing native plants you can provide the needed food for adults as well as baby birds. Where do all those caterpillars come from that are needed to feed birds’ young? There are many native trees that support hundreds of species of caterpillars and other insects. Oaks support over 500 species of caterpillars, cherries and willows support over 450 species of caterpillars, and birches support over 400 species. Many native shrubs produce fruits that birds love, including blueberries, viburnums, chokeberry, hollies and winterberries.

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Re-Thinking Your Fall Chores

By: Stacey Wildberger – September 2016

It seems like just yesterday I was anxiously waiting spring and the new growth of the garden, the buds bursting forth, and the beautiful blooms opening and now suddenly fall is right around the corner. What better time to start thinking about fall cleanup in the garden and around the yard, but STOP-not so fast on some of those traditional garden chores. If you want to create ecofriendly yards that sustain wildlife, support biodiversity and protect our pollinators there are some simple things you can do to help.

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Phragmites Update

We have ordered a wetland seed mix from Ernst Seed Company to encourage new growth of beneficial plants in the areas burned.  Stay tuned to our Facebook page and email list serve for upcoming seed-scattering opportunities!

PDK Horticultural came out to look at the remaining phragmites around the lake, and he feels confident that we can eradicate the remaining stand this fall.

Progress in the Reforestation Area

We are excited to welcome over 500 students from Broadneck High School at the beginning of June for a week of planting!  Students from US Government classes will be earning service hours planting trees, removing english ivy, mulching, etc on several reforestation sites along Lake Claire Drive.  We could use some adult volunteers to help lead and direct the students.  If you know how to properly plant a tree and would like to volunteer between the hours of 8am – 1pm please contact Jennifer Vaccaro:lakeclaire@comcast.net

We are thrilled to finally add the property at 1048 Lake Claire Drive to our reforestation efforts.  This large property is infested with bamboo, bushkiller, phragmites and many other “least wanted” invasive plants!  Eradication of those plants will be ongoing through the growing season.

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