The Autumn colours in Grimsby don't seem to be that bright. I made a trip to Toronto on Tuesday and the colours at the Toronto Botanical Garden were splendid. Beautiful orange and yellow maples reflected in the water of Wilket Creek.
The highlight of the trip wasn't the opportunity to catch some Fall colour, but the opportunity to hear Doug Tallamy speak at the Carolinian Canada CoalitionConference.
"Doug Tallamy is professor and chair of the Department of Entomology and Wildlife Ecology at the University of Delaware, where he has authored eighty research articles and has taught Insect Taxonomy, Behavioral Ecology, Humans and Nature, and other courses for thirty-two years. Chief among his research goals is to better understand the many ways insects interact with plants and how such interactions determine the diversity of animal communities.His book Bringing Nature Home: How Native Plants Sustain Wildlife in Our Gardens was published by Timber Press in 2007 and was awarded the 2008 silver medal by the Garden Writer’s Association. Tallamy was awarded the Garden Club of America Margaret Douglas Medal for Conservation and the Tom Dodd Jr. Award of Excellence in 2013."
A persuasive speaker gives us motivation through facts and data. The most compelling statistic was that Oak trees supports 534 species of moths and butterflies. And that their caterpillars are a mandatory food source for nesting birds. This connection gives us the understanding of why we need to plant insect-friendly species in order to maintain our bird, butterfly and bee populations.
And his most important point? It is up to homeowners to make their gardens welcome to birds and insects.