What To Plant In a Pollinator Garden

 In Blog, Summer

We hear about it almost every day: the bees and butterflies are in trouble. Our very important pollinators are dying and we need to do something to protect these species so we can continue to enjoy our delicious fruits and vegetables.

The good news is that you can plant a pollinator garden on your property that will be both beautiful and helpful to our friends, the bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds.

What To Plant In A Pollinator Garden

There are plenty of lovely options for a pollinator garden. Here are a few essential tips to make sure you have the right plants:

1. Plants from local, Canadian nurseries.

  • Many large chain and big box stores carry brands and plants that are grown in the US. The US has different standards and seeds, and you cannot be sure that they will produce quality plants in the long-term.
  • Your local, Canadian garden shop or nursery will grow their own high-quality plants with seeds from Canada (unless specified otherwise), which means that they are guaranteed. Each nursery has its own unique guarantees and standards, so be sure to ask for their details.
  • Your local nursery will care about the quality of their plants as they want to ensure a positive experience for their customers — they care about their reputation and they want you to keep coming back.

2. Plants without chemicals.

  • Many chains will sell products that contain neonicotinoids (sometimes referred to as neonics). Neonicotinoids are a form of insecticide and the effects from the chemical have a lasting, negative impact in nature.
  • Neonics contaminate the soil, the pollen of plants, and our water, and they are toxic to bees and butterflies.

3. Plants with bright colours, large landing areas, and lots of flowers.

  • Bees and butterflies actually prefer landing on flowers, not just hovering above them, so it’s important to plant flowers that feature large petals or leaves.
  • Plants that provide plentiful flowers are also ideal. The more flowers, the more pollen.
  • Plants with hollow stems provide shelter to some bees and they offer areas for the females to breed.
  • Colourful plants, particularly plants with yellow, pink, and purple flowers are very attractive to bees and butterflies.

Top Flowers To Plant In A Pollinator Garden

As you select your favourites, keep in mind that you want your plants to bloom at different times to ensure that your gardens are flowering all season long.

The list of ideal pollinator plants is long, but here are a few of our favourites:

  • Aster
  • Basil
  • Black-Eyed Susan
  • Bee Balm
  • Butterfly Bush
  • Cardinal Flower
  • Columbine
  • Blanket Flower
  • Carpet Geranium
  • Caryopteris
  • Cosmos
  • English Lavender
  • Globe Thistle
  • Hebe
  • Huckleberry
  • Hyssop
  • Purple Coneflower
  • Rosemary
  • Sage
  • Snowberry
  • Spotted Joe Pye Weed
  • Stonecrop
  • Sunflower
  • Wild Bergamot

Planting a pollinator garden is a lovely idea, but make sure that you have chosen the right plants for the right location, and that they’ll grow at the right times and at the right heights so your garden looks beautiful all season long. Contact the team at Green Thumb Landscaping and we’ll help you plant the perfect pollinator garden.

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