Bees, flies, and an occasional butterfly come to partake of my goldenrod in the backyard.
I planted it at the suggestion of the late Marge Rachlin, my friend, my neighbor, and my garden consultant. I turned to her for advice when my backyard, shaded since we moved here in 1989, had lots of sun upon the removal of two massive dead oaks. I knew nothing about gardening for sun.
As my hostas and Japanese grasses burned, the goldenrod flourished. Two small plants mushroomed into large green cascading bush-shaped plants, but I wondered if I would get yellow blooms. I waited through August, and by the beginning of September I was seeing a bit of yellow here and there. And by mid-September it was in full bloom with flowerets buzzing with activity.
The many small bumblebees who arrived seemed so absorbed in their work that I wondered what would happen if I put my hand underneath a yellow tendril. Would one crawl onto my hand? One did for a moment, but it was back on the plant in a flash to continue its work.
It is mesmerizing to watch the insects flying and hopping from one part of the plant to another.
Now that I have gotten a visual taste of pollinators, I want more. Soon I will be planting crossvines on one of my tree trunks to attract hummingbirds. And I am doing research on other native plants that will attract even more buzzing in the yard.
Which pollinator-friendly plants are your favorites? And can anyone identify the butterfly?