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Old 08-08-2013, 05:26 PM   #1
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Default Lowenfels: Non-native landscaping plants are an issue

Lowenfels: Non-native landscaping plants are an issue
Anchorage Daily News
Published: August 7, 2013
By Jeff Lowenfels Gardening

Lowenfels: Non-native landscaping plants are an issue | Jeff Lowenfels | ADN.com
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The debate was ignited, in part, by a book called "Bringing Nature Home" by Douglas Tallamy, Professor and Chair of Entomology and Wildlife Ecology at the University of Delaware. The book makes a pretty iron-clad case that modern landscapes and increasing development that uses them is destroying the habitat that supports wildlife that ranges from insects to four legged animals and birds.Douglas' wonderful book, highly recommended by the way, shows how the creation of a suburban landscape changes the ecology of the area. Replacing native trees and shrubs with exotic ones takes away the berries that the birds in the area used to eat and reduces the "normal" insect fare by staggering amounts both in actual numbers as well as diversity.The result is a loss of wildlife habit almost as severe as paving it all over. Birds, in particular, suffer. Professor Tallamy explains all of this with ample examples and pictures and then offers some solutions, which don't require...
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Old 08-28-2013, 02:30 PM   #2
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That is an interesting perspective from someone that lives in a place where (they believe) loss of habitat is not yet critical.

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What we plant in our yards impacts wildlife. We know this because much of what we plant attracts moose who love to browse on exotics. But what we take out of our yards, sometimes it was the builder or a previous owner, might be the bush that supports swallowtails. Sure, they love the lilacs when they are in bloom and eat the nectar from them, but I am guessing they don't overwinter in them.
Read more here: Lowenfels: Non-native landscaping plants are an issue | Jeff Lowenfels | ADN.com
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Old 08-29-2013, 09:13 AM   #3
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Jeff Lowenfels is the author of Teaming with Microbes: The Organic Gardener's Guide to the Soil Food Web; and I see that he's authored a new book Teaming with Nutrients: The Organic Gardener's Guide to Optimizing Plant Nutrition.
Teaming with Microbes: The Organic Gardener's Guide to the Soil Food Web
Teaming with Nutrients: The Organic Gardener's Guide to Optimizing Plant Nutrition

I'm really glad to see that someone is moving these two interest groups (organic gardeners, native plants) closer together. They have a common overriding interest - a healthy land and a healthy environment. Both groups advocate for more sustainable practices. They can both benefit from helping the other succeed. They can both benefit from the knowledge of the other.

Both groups are garnering more attention from the public and from scientists. I think Wildlife Gardeners has recognized this natural partnership from its inception. By providing discussion forums for both groups at one website Wildlife Gardeners provides a place for both groups to see this natural relationship and learn from each other.
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Old 09-01-2013, 09:33 AM   #4
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I agree. Good points, NEWisc.
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