Backyard Habitat

Backyard Habitat for Birds (& Butterflies & Dragonflies & More!)

program by Pat Sutton

In the “Go Green” movement, all too often yards are forgotten and, in fact, many yards are the antithesis of green. The first and most important step is to “Go Native,” to favor native plants and wildlife-friendly practices. Pat Sutton will showcase native trees, shrubs, vines, wildflowers, and even weeds that are most beneficial to birds and other wildlife. From the perspective of a life-long naturalist intimate with the workings of the natural world, Sutton will share countless common-sense garden maintenance techniques that will help property owners avoid common practices that actually harm rather than benefit wildlife. In addition to the obvious (bird feeders, bird houses, and bird baths), this program is packed with the “how’s and why’s” of attracting birds, butterflies, dragonflies, and other wildlife to your backyard, no matter how small or how urban. In rapidly developing regions, backyards are critical wildlife habitat for nesting, migratory, and wintering birds, as well as frogs and toads, butterflies, dragonflies, and other beneficial insects. Learn how to create a wildlife refuge right out your own back door — a refuge for you and for all wildlife!

Before this program, download, print, and read my many handouts on native plants for specific sites (pollinator gardens, shady areas, etc).  My list of “New Jersey’s Native Trees, Shrubs, and Vines That are Most Beneficial to Birds” is annotated with the number of NJ bird species that feed on fruits, seeds, cones, or catkins of each.  Many of these same native trees are important host plants used by butterflies and moths.  My “Gardening for Pollinators” handout is also KEY; it is my most in depth handout and applies to all native plant gardening.  My “List of Some Sources of Native Plants in NJ, DE, eastern MD, and eastern PA” directs readers to safe sources of native plants grown by knowledgeable nursery owners wise to the hazards of neonics!  Click HERE to see these native plant resources / handouts and others.



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