Diversity is essential to long term prairie success. At Duffy Meadows, we have 48 species seeded into our native prairie. Instead of looking at a long list of latin names, I decided to create a photo guide for identifying these prairie plants. Below are the guides to the plants we seeded in 2016 and the percentages used.
In addition to the plants that we seeded, there are other native plants growing on the property that have or will seed themselves into the prairie – along with a few sporadic extras added by us. As they become more prominent – and we determine which plants survive long term – I will compile a list of all the plants we are working with and which have proven to be important forage plants.
We are aiming to create a habitat that allows forage for all seasons (especially the late fall season in zone 4a) with adequate pollen and nectar for a large apiary. We want the bees to stay on our property (though no animals respect arbitrary property lines) and plan to accomplish this by having the best quality/quantity of forage plants on our land.
We are anxiously awaiting the spring thaw to see which plants will emerge and how full the prairie will become – finally bringing bees onto the property is incumbent on the prairies success.