I went for a wander today through a unique part of the Fells called the “90mm site”, named after the military anti-aircraft weapons that once resided there.
|Pollinator on flat-top goldenrod (Euthamia graminifolia) – native plant!|
It’s unusual in that it includes areas of open meadow in the mostly-wooded Fells. A meadow habitat is a sanctuary for birds, animals, and insects – including pollinators like bees, flies, and butterflies.
|Pollinator approaching hawkweed (Hieracium sp.) – likely non-native|
In New England, meadows naturally give way over time to shrubs and then trees in a process called ecological succession.
|Pollinator on black knapweed (Centaurea nigra) – non-native plant|
Unless nature or humans intervene, that is.
|Pollinator on round-headed bush-clover (Lespedeza capitata) – native plant!|
To remain a meadow, an area needs ongoing care in the form of mowing and removing invasive species, like Asian bittersweet, which overrun neglected areas.
|Pollinator on white sweet-clover (Melilotus albus) – non-native plant|
Lucky for this meadow, Medford Girl Scout Troop 75198 have taken it on as their Silver Award Project. They’re clearing invasives, planting natives, and making way for more pollinators like the ones in these photos. What wonderful work![Plant ID corrections & pollinator IDs very welcome. There’s so much to learn! Thanks to Walter for IDing the goldenrod.]