Pollinator Gardens with Ken Beattie

  • Plants that Attract Butterflies

    These plants are recommended for a butterfly garden.  These common butterflies are beautiful and need to eat too. They enjoy few pesticides, native plants, bright colours and long days spent in the sun: not looking for a serious relationship, just like to flutter about.

    Perennials
    Achillea
    Agastache
    Asclepias
    Aster
    Delphinium
    Echinacea
    Hemerocallis
    Leucathemum
    Liatris
    Nepeta
    Phlox
    Rudbeckia
    Scabiosa
    Stokesia

    Flowering Shrubs
    Buddleia
    Campsis radicans
    Lonicera

  • Plants that Attract Hummingbirds

    Hummingbirds enjoy the delicious nectar that these plants provide. Generally the blooms are vibrant in colour, limited to smell and abundant in nectar.
    Hummingbirds are just regular birds who can’t remember the lyrics.

    Perennials
    Delphinium 'Guardian Blue'
    Hemerocallis fulva
    Kniphofia 'Flamenco'
    Kniphofia 'Mango Popsicle'
    Lobelia cardinalis
    Penstemon 'Cherry Sparks'
    Penstemon bar. 'Rondo Mix'

    Flowering Shrubs
    Weigela 'Red Prince'

  • Plants that Attract Bees

    These particular plants to lure bees to your garden. They are often single bloom, colourful budded plants that are full of nectar. Wildflower gardens are a BEE-autiful smorgasbord for a bee.

    Perennials
    Achillea 'Moonshine'
    Achillea 'Summer Pastels'
    Achillea 'Sunny Seduction'
    Agastache 'Blue Fortune'
    Asclepias incarnata
    Asclepias tuberosa
    Aster alp. 'Dwarf Mix'
    Aster 'Wood's Purple'
    Echinacea 'Ruby Star'
    Gaillaridia 'Arizona Apricot'
    Gaillaridia 'Arizona Sun'
    Lavandula 'Hidcote Blue'
    Lavandula 'Munstead'
    Leucathemum 'Becky'
    Monarda 'Fireball'
    Nepeta 'Junior Walker'
    Perovskia 'Little Spire'
    Phlox pan. 'Early Start Red'
    Rudbeckia 'Goldsturm'
    Salvia 'New Dimension Blue'
    Salvia 'New Dimension Rose'
    Salvia 'Marcus'
    Scabiosa 'Flutter Deep Blue'
    Scabiosa jap. 'Ritz Blue'
    Scabiosa jap. 'Ritz Rose'
    Stokesia 'Mel's Blue'

    Flowering Shrubs
    Buddleia 'Buzz Series'
    Campsis radicans
    Lonicera 'Goldflame'

    Trees
    Amelanchier (all tree forms)
    Cercis (all tree forms)
    Cornus (all tree forms)
    Malus (all crabapple)
    Prunus (Kwanzan & SnowFntn)
    Pyrus (ornamental varieties)
    Syringa ret. ''Ivory Silk'

  • Plants that Attract Songbirds

    These plants attract songbirds. These birds are not ‘snowbirds’ and need a variety of plants to help them survive year round in the geographical area they live in.

    Snowbird: a northerner who moves to a warmer southern location for the winter.

    Flowering Shrubs
    Lonicera 'Gold Flame'

    Trees
    Amelanchier (all tree forms)
    Cercis (all tree forms)
    Cornus (all tree forms)
    Malus (all crabapple)
    Prunus (Kwanzan & SnowFntn)
    Pyrus (ornamental varieties)

Attract Pollinators

Pretty Pollinators

In the flowering plant life cycle, pollinators play a crucial role in their success. Bees, butterflies, hummingbirds, bats, flies and wasps are some of the important pollinators. Sadly, the population of these pollinators is declining quickly with the use of chemicals, diseases, pollution and diminishing open space. Gardeners can have a positive influence by planting plants that will help these pollinators flourish.

What is Pollination?

The process by which plant pollen is transferred from the male reproductive organs to the female  reproductive organs to form seeds. In flowering plants, pollen is transferred from the anther to the stigma, often by the wind or by insects. In cone-bearing plants, male cones release pollen that is usually borne by the wind to the ovules of female cones. Some plants can self-pollinate, others must cross-pollinate such as shown in the illustration to the left. Occasionally a male and female plant is required for pollination to occur.

Native Flowering Plants

  • Native plants have co-evolved with pollinator species, and are well adapted to the climate, soil and growing season. It’s okay to plant non-native plants as long as they are not invasive.
  • Provide a variety of flower shapes and colors since different pollinators are attracted to different types of flowers.

Pollinators can get pollen from single bloom flowers much more easily because their nectaries are exposed. Petals of double bloom varieties often block the flower’s nectary, making it difficult to navigate. Provide shelter for nesting and egg-laying, such as:

  • Dead trees or limbs to create nesting habitat for bees
  • Tall grasses, shrubs, and low growing plants
  • Minimize Manicuring: let a hedge grow or part of your lawn grow wild for ground-nesting bees (dandelions provide essential nutrients in the early Spring!)
  • Patches of fallen branches or small patches of bare ground
  • Artificial nesting boxes can also help increase the population of pollinators in your area. Nesting boxes can be purchased at many garden centers.
  • A pollinator garden will provide pollen and nectar. Consider adding special feeders to help attract hummingbirds and butterflies.
  • Plan ahead: Pollinators require a constant source of food from when they emerge in the Spring, right through the Fall. Be sure to have a continuing sequence of flowers in bloom to provide pollen throughout the growing season.
  • Butterflies require specific host plants to lay their eggs so that their caterpillars can feed on them once they emerge. For example, monarch butterflies require milkweed to feed on in the early stages. Once the caterpillars become butterflies, they feed on all nectar and pollen sources.
  • Plant in clumps rather than single plants to better attract the pollinators. Bees tend to collect pollen from one type of plant at a time.

Not all pollinators see color the same as we do, like honey bees for example. You can help them by choosing flowers that have white, yellow, blue or purple flowers. This will help them spot resources in your garden more easily! Pollinators will also go crazy for aromatic flowers, such as lavender and all the herbs known!   If you must use a pesticide, choose one that is the least toxic to non-pest species, does not persist on the leaves, and apply it in the evening or early morning when most pollinators are not active.

Our Statement

Over the last few years, there has been a lot of concern over the decrease in Monarch butterflies and now a decrease in pollinator populations, especially bees. The concern has been pointed to both a loss of habitat and pesticides, in particular pesticides containing neonicotinoid’s (neonic’s).

Medallion Plants are not sprayed with neonics but are under a very strict Integrated Pest Management (IPM) program. Using a few chemicals is the best for the safety of the environment, the employees and is cost-efficient. Where-ever possible cultural practices are used in production; hand weeding (labor intensive), weed guards, cocoa discs, wood mulch, and ground cloth to suppress weed growth. Ventilating the greenhouses and keeping the nursery tidy helps reduce the population of aphids, cosmetic insects and breeding areas for insects and pests.

The nursery industry represents only a minuscule fraction of neonic use. It is estimated to be a fraction of 1%, and at the moment there is a ban on the use of neonics for cosmetic reasons. Most neonics are used as a seed treatment for food crops.

Medallion Plants partnered with the Canadian Wildlife Federation (CWF) to supply the garden center industry with the best solution to increasing bee populations: The more plants planted, the more pollen there is for bees, birds, and butterflies which in turn provides a habitat for them to thrive in.

Medallion Plants

Garden with a Winner