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The New Pollinator Bed

June 12th, 2020

Three years ago I started developing a garden on a slope by the driveway that was difficult to mow. The soil is very sandy and dry, with no organic matter to speak of. It was also infested with quack grass. I laid down cardboard and covered it with mulch, then I let it sit over winter.


This garden bed is filled with things just for the pollinators, I’ve working hard to plan for blooms throughout the season.

Currently, there are sages, spiderwort, persicaria, spurge, cushion plants, scabiosa, iris, veronica, and geranium,

I recently added a few shrubs as well, ‘Miss Kim’ lilac, a ‘Coppertina’ ninebark, and a ‘Quick Fire’ panicle hydrangea that came with us from Ohio and has been living in the potager. I also added a Kousa Dogwood that I scored at the home improvement store last fall for $7. It overwintered in the basement and was planted in this bed in the spring.

A friend made me this lovely sculpture from old tools, it was a birthday gift last summer. I’ve been looking for just the right spot for it in the garden. After finding two large black rocks that were nicely square, it is gracing the pollinator bed.

There’ still more to add to this bed, I have plants in the nursery area that need moved. I also have plans to add a few more clematis to grow up the shrubs and fill in with even more blooms. Stay tuned for photos of this new garden as the year progresses. If you have any great pollinator plants to recommend let me know in the comments.

What’s your favorite pollinator plant?

6 Comments to “The New Pollinator Bed”
  1. Chris on June 12, 2020 at 3:48 pm

    Monarda aka Bee Balm! :)

    Reply to Chris's comment

  2. David Bentz on June 12, 2020 at 5:46 pm

    Susy,
    So good to hear from Maine. I glad you decided to start blogging again. I have thought about planting pollinator plants to draw in the bees, butterflies, and birds to keep my garden active with life. I just haven’t got to that stage yet. The last two years have been busy with family responsibilities so I’ve been busy working on getting the land reclaimed. The rock outlines of the beds are still there but it’s taking a lot of work to get them back in production. It’s amazing how fast land with revert to wild without tending it.

    Have a great day being kind to the pollinators.

    Nebraska Dave
    Urban Farm

    Reply to David Bentz's comment

  3. Misti on June 13, 2020 at 10:22 am

    Good to see you posting again!

    Favorite pollinator plant–right now any kind of salvia is good but in the fall the frostweed comes on and it is a bonanza for everyone!

    Reply to Misti's comment

  4. Ann Roberts on June 14, 2020 at 6:09 am

    Zinnias are a must in my garden. I usually have 2 good long full rows. But this year only 1 and some random scattered volunteers.

    But once they are blooming it is amazing to see the number of butterflies that are always visiting the flowers. Every kind imaginable. Especially the swallowtails. Not all butterflies are good pollinators but many are. And seeds are cheap for zinnias and the species ones will almost always reseed themselves, but the hybrids have to be reseeded from commercial seed each year

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  5. Josepha on June 18, 2020 at 7:26 am

    Three years ago I quit mowing a large patch of lawn in a side yard. There were already a lot of “weeds” (aka wild flowers) in it but I have since been growing from seed, about a dozen native wild flowers. I sow them in plugs and when they are ready to plant, I chop out a bit of sod and pluck them in. They don’t all take but I’m very pleased so far with the results! It’s getting difficult to find a spot to plant!
    There are echinacea, iron weed, verbena, bee balm, black eyed Susan’s, st.johns wort, obedient plant, asters, daisies,goldenrod,native corn flowers, yarrow and many types of grasses. It is buzzing with insects and birds!
    What is pink flowered plant in the third photo? I would love to have it in there as well!

    Reply to Josepha's comment

  6. Kathie Josey on June 20, 2020 at 4:29 pm

    I love your pollinator garden! How do you keep the soil from eroding off the slope? This is the second time today I’ve heard someone use cardboard to kill the grass/weeds below. I’ll need to do this in the fall! God bless!

    Reply to Kathie Josey's comment

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This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.

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