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Old 10-03-2017, 10:56 AM   #11
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Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Pennsylvania

Originally Posted by KC Clark View Post
I'm finding out this is an uphill battle. Teacher just got recognized by the school board because he got the high school to be officially recognized as an "Ohio Wild School Site." I looked into how you earn this certification and found that the Ohio Division of Wildlife sets a pretty low bar.


So, plant a bunch of rose of sharon that Japanese beetles like to eat and you have created a benefit for wildlife.

"Pollinator gardens" are all the rage so planting anything with flowers that European honeybees like will suffice.
Sad state of affairs.

I noticed the low bar for certifying habitat gardens as well.

Keep up the good fight.
"If suburbia were landscaped with meadows, prairies, thickets or forests, or combinations of these, then the water would sparkle, fish would be good to eat again, birds would sing and human spirits would soar." ~ Lorrie Otto
~ A Native Backyard Blog ~
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Old 10-30-2017, 07:46 PM   #12
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Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Michigan

Originally Posted by KC Clark View Post
Last Friday, I became aware of an ongoing Eagle Scout project. I was concerned because the scout's mentor is a retired science teacher who spreads bad info amongst the students I work with. I contacted a friend who told me where the butterfly habitat plantings were taking place. Looked at one of the spots yesterday. The scout's project had put in butterfly bush, lilac, and rose of sharon. Was talking to my wife about it and she said I should talk with my son. I did and found out his high school ecology class had toured that site a few hours before I was there. My son was surprised the teacher had singled out the butterfly bush as a great thing to plant since my son has heard from me all his life that butterfly bush was not to be used. The teacher did push the importance of planting native plants but apparently has not bothered to figure out where the plants are from that he is praising. Looked the teacher up and found photos he posted of the area. He is very proud of the "restoration area," including the Queen Anne's Lace, a non-native invasive that is officially banned in Ohio. I expected to find QAL because the photos that alerted me to the scout project were of black swallowtail chrysalises. It is like black swallowtails never existed in Ohio until Europeans brought over their plants.

My son is a senior. Always figured if I had to contact a teacher about questionable teachings, it would have something to do with history or politics. Now 3+ years in, the time has come but it is a unexpected subject.
Ugh! I feel your frustration. My cousin and her husband are amateur wildlife/nature photographers. They came over for a cookout last summer and were just amazed at the action in our yard. They decided to start working on their own back yard. They put in a nice pond. They planted some trees and quite a few perennials. But....the trees were dwarf blue spruces and weeping pussy willows and such. The perennials were all cultivars from big box stores. They all said "native" and "attracts butterflies" on the tags. I hardly knew what to say when we went over to visit them. They had put so much time and money into this project. I thought they understood the meaning of native after they visited our yard. I offered to share some of my extra plants to fill in bare spots this summer. At least I can do that much. Hopefully those will take off and the cultivars will be short lived.
One with the earth, with the sky, one with everything in life. I believe it will start with conviction of the heart.
~Kenny Loggins~
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Old 11-03-2017, 12:32 PM   #13
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Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Central Ohio

I have a central Ohio butterfly hostplants list I hand out. I list the butterfly and what to plant for their caterpillars. It is heavy on native stuff but does have some non-native that are explicitly listed as non-native. Dill would be one example. I also list the local nurseries that carry the native plants since most nurseries don't.

Putting something similar together for your area helps you steer people in the right direction.
Attached Files
File Type: doc HostplantHandoutJune2017.doc (33.5 KB, 5 views)

The caterpillar does all the work but the butterfly gets all the publicity.

George Carlin
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Old 11-04-2017, 08:03 PM   #14
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Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Southeast Ohio

Great list, KC! But how frustrating that our state DNR is not pushing people to do better.

Some good news from our little corner of SE Ohio: two friends who have enjoyed my little city garden are converting parts of their country properties to pollinator habitat, in large part with spare plants and seeds collected from our lawn strip.
"If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need." --Cicero

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bush, butterfly, careful, plant

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