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The original item was published from 5/2/2016 7:12:08 AM to 6/16/2016 12:00:03 AM.

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Posted on: May 18, 2016

[ARCHIVED] We All Like Monarchs and Hummingbirds; Have You Created an Oasis in Your Yard to Lure Them In?

Monarchs, hummingbirds, and other pollinators need quality nectar sources and habitat to make themselves at home. You can create a garden oasis by adding native plants to your yard. Learn more...

"If you build it they will come." Most people associate that phrase with a popular '80's film about baseball, but conservationists live by the same principal. If you create habitat, the critters you’re hoping to view will come. This concept isn't limited to large public spaces though. Your yard can provide habitat and food sources for the butterflies and hummingbirds you enjoy watching. The key, add native plants to your yard.

What is a native plant? A native plant is a plant that could be found growing in Minnesota prior to the 1800's. These are plants that butterflies, hummingbirds, and other wildlife evolved using. Many pollinators are reliant on a single type of native plant to complete their growth cycle (e.g. monarchs & milkweed, Karner Blue Butterflies & Wild Blue Lupine). Here are some native plants that are pollinator favorites:

- Pasque Flower
- Columbine
- Butterfly Milkweed
- Wild Blue Lupine
- Giant Hyssop
- Blazing Star
- Cardinal Flower
- Blue Lobelia
- Sky Blue Aster

A word to the wise, it is best to avoid cultivated varieties or cultivars. These plants have gone through a selective breeding program to promote a specific trait like plant height or flower color. When selecting for specific traits, sometimes the quality of the nectar or pollen is lost. They are usually indicated by a descriptive word or phrase in quotation marks (e.g. Coneflower 'Heavenly Dream' or Blazing Star 'Kobold').

More About Gardening with Native Plants...
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