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Pollinator Info

Without the actions of pollinators, agricultural economies, our food supply, and surrounding landscapes would collapse. Birds, bats, bees, butterflies, beetles, and other small mammals that pollinate plants are responsible for bringing us one out of every three bites of food. They also sustain our ecosystems and produce our natural resources by helping plants reproduce.

Pollinating animals travel from plant to plant carrying pollen on their bodies in a vital interaction that allows the transfer of genetic material critical to the reproductive system of most flowering plants – the very plants that bring us countless fruits, vegetables, and nuts, ½ of the world’s oils, fibers and raw materials. They also prevent soil erosion and increase carbon sequestration This nearly invisible ecosystem service is a precious resource that requires attention and support and in disturbing evidence found around the globe, is increasingly in jeopardy.

Pollinator populations are changing. Many pollinator populations are in decline and this decline is attributed most severely to a loss in feeding and nesting habitats. Pollution, the misuse of chemicals, disease, and changes in climatic patterns are all contributing to shrinking and shifting pollinator populations. In some cases there isn’t enough data to gauge a response, and this is even more worrisome.

How can I help the pollinators?

One of the easiest ways to help the pollinators is to choose plants that are beneficial for them. Below is a list of all of the different trees, shrubs and perennials that benefit pollinators.

Perennials & Grasses

Common Name Botanical Name Bloom time Plant type
Little Bluestem Schizachyrium scoparium Fall Grass
Prairie Dropseed Sporobolus heterolepsis Fall Grass
Switch Grass Panicum virgatum Fall Grass
Golden Alexander Zizia Aurea Spring (Early/Mid) Perennial
Wild Cranesbill Geranium maculatum Spring (Early/Mid) Perennial
Common Spiderwort Tradescantia ohiensis Spring (Early/Mid) Perennial
Lungwort Pulmonaria Spring (Early/Mid) Perennial
Virginia Bluebells Mertensia virginica Spring (Early/Mid) Perennial
False Indigo Baptisia australis Spring (Early/Mid) Perennial
Pale Purple Coneflower Echinacea pallida Spring (Mid/Late) Perennial
Foxglove Beardtongue Penstemon digitalis Spring (Mid/Late) Perennial
Catmint Nepeta Spring (Mid/Late) Perennial
Purple Prairie Clover Dalea purpurea Summer (Early/Mid) Perennial
White Wild Indigo Baptisia alba Summer (Early/Mid) Perennial
False Sunflower Heliopsis Summer (Early/Mid) Perennial
Milkweed Asclepias Summer (Early/Mid) Perennial
Bee Balm Monarda Summer (Early/Mid) Perennial
Black Eyed Susan Rudbeckia Summer (Early/Mid) Perennial
Coreopsis Coreopsis Summer (Early/Mid) Perennial
Allium Allium Summer (Mid/Late) Perennial
Hyssop Agastache Summer (Mid/Late) Perennial
Ironweed Vernonia Summer (Mid/Late) Perennial
Blazing Star (Rough or Marsh) Liatris Summer (Mid/Late) Perennial
Cardinal Flower Lobelia Summer (Mid/Late) Perennial
Russian Sage Perovskia Summer (Mid/Late) Perennial
Joe Pye Weed Eupatorium Summer (Mid/Late) Perennial
Mountain mint Pycnanthemum virginianum Summer (Mid/Late) Perennial
Culver’s Root Veronicastrum virginicum Summer (Mid/Late) Perennial
Aster Symphyotrichum Fall Perennial
Sedum Sedum Fall Perennial
Goldenrod Solidago Fall Perennial
Turtlehead Chelone Fall Perennial
Salvia- Salvia Spring (Mid/Late) Perennial/Annual
Pennsylvania Sedge Carex pensylvanica   Sedge

Trees & Shrubs

Common Name Botanical Name Bloom time Plant type
Vernal Witchhazel Hamamelis vernalis Spring (Early/Mid) Large Shrub
Oakleaf Hydrangea Hydrangea quercifolia Summer Large Shrub/Small Tree
Ninebark Physocarpus Spring (Mid/Late) Shrub
Button Bush Cephelanthus occientalis Summer (Mid/Late) Shrub
Butterfly Bush Buddleia Summer (Mid/Late) Shrub
Chokeberry Aronia Spring (Mid/Late) Shrub
Cornelian Cherry Dogwood Cornus mas Spring (Early/Mid) Tree
Seven-Son Flower Heptacodium miconioides Fall Tree
Serviceberry Amelanchier Spring Tree
Linden Tilia americana Spring (Late) Tree
Tuliptree Liriodendron tulipiera Summer (Early) Tree