10 Weeks of Vegetable Gardening: Week 5

by - February 25, 2011

Each Friday I am posting a weekly guide for prepping your home vegetable garden. In Raleigh, the last killing frost date is April 11 (on average, give or take a week), so my first weekend for planting (summer crops) outdoors is April 9.

This week we remember our pollinators. I would write out a beautiful article for you on bees, but alas, that has been done here. Please check it out.

To summarize:
Don’t use pesticides
Use local native plants (avoid hybrids)
Chose several colors of flowers
Plant flowers in clumps
Include flowers of different shapes
Have a diversity of plants flowering all season
Plant where bees will visit

From Beegreen Gardens, here is a list of native bee plants for North Carolina:
Asclepias tuberosa - Butterfly Weed
Baptisia australis - False Indigo
Bignonia capreolata - Crossvine
Callirhoe involucrata - Poppy Mallow
Campsis radicans - Trumpet Vine
Chasmanthium latifolium - River Oats
Chrysoganum virginianum - Green and Gold
Echinaceae purpurea - Purple Coneflower
Iris cristata - Crested Iris
Lobelia cardinalis - Cardinal flower
Lobelia siphilitica - Great Blue Lobelia
Lonicera sempervirens - Coral Honeysuckle
Penstemon digitalis - Beardtongue
Physostegia virginiana - Obedient Plant
Rudbeckia fulgida - Black-eyed Susan
Salvia lyrata - Lyre-Leaved Sage
Solidago canadensis - Goldenrod
Tiarella cordifolia - Foamflower

This weekend I am planting a butterfly garden mix that I found at Costco, which only has one from the list above, but does meet the suggestions of various shapes, sizes and colors. I guess that gives me an excuse to hit up the plant nurseries!

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