July Event at Dan and Kris’ Lakeside Garden

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Twenty-five people wandered a variety of areas converted to native plantings, especially the prairie boulevard in bloom. Dan Schutte and his wife, Kris, explained the 3-year process of raising plants from seed through to the clearing & planting stages. A surprise was Dan’s monarch house, complete with cocoons; a gift from Kris. Eight new people joined the tour. Several members continued on to weed the Chapter garden at Leif Erickson Park.

Schutte Pless

June Yard Tour

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The yard tour at John Pastor‘s last week was a great success:  perfect weather with 24 people attending.

June 2014 Yard Tour

Tour of John Pastor’s yard.

John explained the front rain/fruit gardens and the backyard veggie gardens.
He discussed plans for the new prairie side yard overlooking Chester Creek.
Mary offered delicious bars and coffee on the porch, then gave a tour of the roof-top garden.

Wild Ones events May 28 PM and May 31 AM

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Happy spring! The marsh marigolds are just starting to bloom in my rain garden, which reminds me it’s time to get out an announcement about two events in May hosted by Wild Ones: Native Plants, Natural Landscapes – Arrowhead Chapter.

  1. Wednesday May 28 will be a great night to gather and meet each other, work in the garden and learn at our chapter community garden located on the Duluth Lakewalk a few blocks east of Fitgers, just across the pedestrian bridge from First Lutheran Church. Bring a lawn chair and dress for the weather. We will provide heavy snacks & lemonade.The schedule for the evening looks like this:

    4:30 – 5:30 garden maintenance early time slot – come one, come all, bring a little weeding hand tool or a big edging shovel or just your gloves and we will provide the weeds to pull and perhaps a plant or two to plant

    5:30 – 6:00 garden tour

    6:00 – 6:30ish Heather Wright Wendel and Carol Andrews will explain the “hugelkultur” concept that can be used to create a type of raised bed for vegetables, orchards (ala Duluth Grill), and could be used for native plants too (http://www.richsoil.com/hugelkultur/ )

    6:30 – 7:30ish another garden maintenance time slot

    See the event page for directions.hugelkultur

  2. The Annual DGFS Plant Sale is coming up May 31, with the official start time of 8:00 AM at the Rose Garden on London Road. In addition to shoppers we need plants to sell and people to help sell or just share information on native plants, their benefits and Wild Ones. Do you have time to help at the sale? Plants you can divide in your yard or spares grown from seed? Please contact us if you answered yes to either question. Thanks to Dan Schutte we will have approx 200 swamp milkweed plants Dan grew from seed for sale at great prices.See the event page for directions.

Gypsy Moth Treatment Proposal

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We recently received an email from Lucia Hunt with the Minnesota Department of Agriculture regarding gypsy moths:

…the gypsy moth is crossing our paths again. We caught a record-setting number of moths last year and 90% of them were trapped in Lake and Cook counties. Not surprisingly, a few have spilled across the border into St. Louis County and the MDA is proposing to manage them by treating them this summer. Please see the attached bulletin for details about the products and the treatments.

Because of the huge number of residents in the proposed treatment area, we are not able to direct mail all affected residents. We’ll be focusing on traditional and social media to get the word out.

To help with this effort, here is the pdf of the proposal that they sent.
Proposal for Gypsy Moth Mgmt St. Louis County

You can find additional information on their website at http://www.mda.state.mn.us/gypsymoth.
Links to the pdf and the website are also on our Learn page.

Thinking of Spring

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More than 25 people came to our February meeting with Jeff West of Boreal Natives to think warm thoughts about gardening and native plants. With the especially cold winter this year, many of us are eager to see green, growing things again. It was a great presentation followed by a very informative question and answer session.

Jeff West of Boreal Natives

Jeff West of Boreal Natives

Be sure to join us on March 26 to learn how to keep the ubiquitous deer population of Duluth from consuming everything you plant.

Eye Candy and Brain Food – February 26 Meeting

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This month’s presentation will be by native plant expert Jeff West, Manager of Boreal Natives – a division of Prairie Restorations Inc, one of the upper Midwest’s first companies to specialize in native plant community restoration.

Jeff will treat our winter-weary eyes to a treat of flower photos, describing many of his favorite native plants, including their growth characteristics and best uses. Following the presentation Jeff will take questions on preparing your planting site, selecting plants, and maintenance.

  • Do you amend soils first, especially clay?
  • What is the best way to kill existing vegetation?
  • How is starting with seed different than live plants?
  • I scattered native plant seeds on the ground last fall; what do I do next?

The meeting is on Wednesday, February 26 at Hartley Nature Center.  Snacks and socializing from 6:30 -7:00PM. The program will begin a 7:00.

Directions can be found on the event page.

Making Natural Dyes – January 22 Meeting

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Just when you thought native plants couldn’t be good for one more thing, what with the habitat they offer for creatures large and small, year-round beauty, foods for the foragers, blooms for the bug eyed and the basic beauty of nature – they go and add to the list.

It is time to kick off the 2014 season of Wild Ones/Hartley educational programs with an all new, never seen before (at least at a Wild Ones event) topic: making natural dyes from local plants.

Debbie Cooter is a weaver and member of the Duluth Fiber Handcrafters Guild, living in Two Harbors. She will be bringing many examples of natural colors to show.

The meeting is this Wednesday, January 22 at Hartley Nature Center. Snacks and socializing from 6:30 -7:00PM. The program will run from 7:00 – 8:15.

Directions are on the event page.

Cost: Hartley Nature Center asks for a $4 goodwill donation from non-members.

Plants of the Great Lakes Coastal Wetlands – November 20 Meeting

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For this month’s meeting, Nathan Dahlberg, Field Botanist with the Natural Resources Research Institute (NRRI) will present Great Lakes Coastal Wetland Monitoring.

Wetlands are very important habitats that provide a wide range of benefits to both humans and animals. They improve water quality, provide habitat for fish and pollinators, and contain beautiful wild flowers. Nathan Dahlberg will be speaking about the wetlands research carried out be the NRRI and the condition of the Great Lakes Wetlands. He will describe the research being conducted, the native vegetation, and the astounding scenery of the eastern Great Lakes region.

The meeting is at Hartley Nature Center. It is the 3rd Wednesday this month due to Thanksgiving. Socializing starts at 6:30PM, program starts at 7:00.

Directions can be found on the event page.

Wild Ones welcomes author Andrew Slade – October 23 Meeting

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Join us at Hartley Nature Center for a fun evening with local author Andrew Slade.

Socializing & snacking starts at 6:30. Program starts at 7:00 PM.

Hiking and wildflowering on the North Shore, or “How arctic is your disjunct?”

Andrew Slade at Bean Lake overllok

Photo by and of Andrew Slade at the Bean Lake overlook on the North Shore

Hiking the North Shore is about more than challenging climbs and gorgeous views. It’s about the amazing stories told underfoot. Andrew Slade is the author of three North Shore trail guides and an amateur wildflower enthusiast. He will describe some of his favorite day hikes on the North Shore and geek out a bit about the natural history and habitat along the way.

Get a head start on holiday shopping…Andrew will have books for sale and for signing. More info at www.thereandbackbooks.com.

Directions can be found on the event posting.