Thursday, August 10, 2017

Monarch Awards 2017: Winners Announced!

Winners have just been announced. There's a profile article on the Monarch Awards web site as well as the media release. Congratulations to all the finalists, the Buzzin' Dozen, and all the entrants!

The 2017 Monarch Award winner is Amy Taylor!!
Amy, a 2016 finalist who lives on Edgemont Street North in Crown Point, is a herbalist and tea-reader who has an eclectic and broad knowledge of plants. An experienced gardener, Amy made some changes to her garden over the past year, removing some most of the aggressive non-natives (despite their herbalism usefulness) and ramping up the native plant content. Amy’s garden showcases the potential for blending unusual native plants into a traditional—and small—garden setting.
Amy's Garden.
One judge remarked on the overwhelming “interestingness” of the space. There’s a huge diversity of species to guarantee blooms right from April through November, along with personal whimsical decor, several amenities for wildlife (bird baths, bug bath, bee boxes, nesting spots), a shed made entirely of recycled materials, and a pergola with natural shade provided by hop vines that are harvested for beer making.

There is always a “mess” potential in gardens designed with ecosystem benefits in mind but Amy has cleverly and discretely sited the composters, brush piles, and all three water barrels. The front yard is completely planted and, although the needs of the plants have trumped the aesthetics somewhat, the effect is respectful of the streetscape and neighbours.

This year the judges chose to award four finalist prizes.

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Creating a Pollinator Paradise: video

What's the buzz about pollination?
Learn why pollinators and native wildflowers are so important, why they have a problem, and find out what you can do about it!

Script, video, and audio by Saige Patti, Hamilton Naturalists' Club Summer Intern.