And Good For Pollinators Too
Aside from the beautiful fall foliage colors there’s not much color elsewhere. Chrysanthemum seems to be abundant in autumn but I’m not a fan of it. I associate it with mourning. It’s commonly used in funerals and to arrange on a wreath. So, I don’t plant chrysanthemum in our garden. We still have plenty of choices for autumn blooming plants and many of them are good for pollinators as well.
I bought Alyssum seed only the first couple of years, now they just come up every year. Cute little flowers that hug the ground, tolerate light frost and smell like honey as a plus.
Aster is one of the flowers that can lend a helping hand in autumn. Both native bees and honey bees love it.
I put two Maximillion Sunflowers in the garden two years ago, now I have a growing patch of it. It blooms when other sunflowers start to fade. It’s a perennial so I don’t have to seed it every year but I will have to divide it next spring as the patch is getting too large for the space.
Fall crocus is also a great pollinator food source. I’ve seen some bees attempt to pry open the flowers before they have fully opened.
Moonflower will bloom from mid summer on. If the weather is warm enough it will keep going. Its large, white, fragrant flower blooms in the evening. And, the flower is edible too.
Calendula is perfect for sunny spots and it self sows. Its flower is edible as well.
About weeds. Many weeds are quite beautiful and provide pollen and nectar as well. I make sure that they don’t overrun the garden. Goldenrod, with it’s bright yellow flower is a great source of pollen and nectar in late autumn. It will grow any place that the seeds drop, even between cracks. I have to pull a lot of them out each spring, sprouting in the wrong place, and it’s the only work I have to do to keep it around.
I don’t know where the first White Heath Aster came from but it has settled in our garden now. I don’t mind at all. I just think of it as an aster that is waiting for humans to see its potential. I do, especially when I see honeybees, Hover fly, Bumblebee and many other small local bees on it’s flowers.
There are a few more late summer-autumn flowers that are easy to grow and good for pollinators I would like to mentioned. Until next time.