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Natives in Bloom: Jan/Feb

We're looking out for native flowers all year long. Dozens of native species are in bloom now and many may be good additions to your yard to support pollinators. Click through the slideshow to view.

LEAVE AND STEMS FOR POLLINATORS

October 2023

This fall, instead of raking and baggings leaves for the landfill, consider leaving the leaves.  Raked under trees, shrubs, and onto garden beds, leaves are free mulch to suppress weeds, keep your soil moist and will fertilize your plants as it breaks down next year.  Many wildlife including insects, frogs, and mammals overwinter in fallen leaves.  Leaves also support micro-organisms in the soil to keep plant healthy and disease free.  Check out this guide from the Xeces Society on creating overwintering and nesting habitat for pollinators.  

Order your Leave the Leaves yard sign to inspire your community to do the same.  Designed exclusively for West Newbury Wild and Native by local artist Jenn House, the sign features a small array of native MA invertebrates that rely on leaf cover, stick, stems, and seed heads to overwinter.  Species featured include Compton tortoiseshell butterfly, firefly, clouded sulphur caterpillar, spring azure, mourning cloak butterfly and caterpillar, lunar moth and caterpillar, and native bees. 

LIGHTS OUT TO HELP BIRDS MIGRATE 

September 2023

Twice a year, birds fly hundreds to thousands of miles between wintering and breeding grounds.  When birds migrate, they mainly fly at night,  navigating by the stars in the night sky.  Improperly installed night lights disorient migrating birds, causing them to veer off-course or collide with building.  You can help migrating birds by doing a few simple things:

  • Turn off outside lights during migration (April, May, Sept, October).

  • Use down shields to direct light to avoid lighting up the sky and to reduce glare.

  • Avoid blue lights for outdoor use. 

To learn more about how you can help birds, visit:  Lights Outs.  This NY Times article opinion provides further tips,

Visit our Dark Skies Campaign to learn about its benefits. 

TOWN WIDE YARD AND GARDEN SALE

Thank you for all the sellers and buyers that made the first Town-wide yard and garden sale a huge success.  We had 20 sellers and well over 100 shoppers.   It was perfect weather to seek needed items and explore hidden treasures while meeting new folks and catching up with friends and neighbors.   Thanks to all who shopped local, recycled, reused, and supported native plants and biodiversity! 

This event raised $500 which will fund the maintenance and expansion of the Native Demonstration Gardens around Town:  Pipestave, Memorial Library, Cherry Hill Reservoir, and Town Hall.   Come check them out and join us to maintain the garden and learn about native garden plants. 

NO MOW MAY,  LOW MOW MAY, AND SPRING CLEANUP

April 2023

With warming temperatures and buds breaking, you may be thinking about garden cleanup and tuning up your lawn mower.  Did you know that your lawn and yard is critical to native bees and pollinators in early Spring?  Over 100 species of bees rely on wildflowers in lawns in April and May before other flowers peak. 

CHECK OUT our beautiful No Mow May sign, featuring Massachusetts wildflowers and pollinators found in lawns, designed by local artist Jenn Houle.  Reserve your sign today under Events!

 

If you left your leaves and stems last fall, it's not time to do spring clean up yet.  They are still harboring hibernating insects and toads.  So, put down the rake, and enjoy the early Spring air.  If you're itching for garden work, the next month is a great time to remove invasive shrubs and vines-- these thawing temperatures makes pulling invasives super easy and effective. 


 

"BIG NIGHT" MIGRATION

March 2023

Every spring, salamanders and frogs clamor out of their underground hibernacula and make their way back to shallow depressions in the forest that fill with rain and snowmelt. These vernal or temporary ponds serve as breeding habitat for many species and are vital to their survival.  Unfortunately, many frogs and salamander have to cross roads to get there.  So, on rainy nights from March to May, where temperatures are above 40F, be careful when driving roads where wetlands to avoid running over these critters.  Want to help us figure out where the frogs and salamanders are? Help us map them using iNatualist here.  

WEST NEWBURY WILD AND NATIVE NAMED CITIZEN OF THE YEAR 

May 2022

At the Annual Town Meeting, Select Woman Wendy Reed announced this year’s Citizen of the Year award winner was West Newbury Wild and Native.  She recognized WN2's efforts to preserving the natural ecosystem of the planet one yard at a time, and the accomplishments the group made since it formed less than two years ago.

WN2

West Newbury Wild and Native is dedicated to sharing information and resources for residents of West Newbury to integrate native plants into their gardening, support pollinators and work to eradicate invasive plants in our yards and Town-owned lands.

To learn more and discover how you can garden native, check out our resources section under Campaigns - Native.

 

Fundamentals of

Pollinator Gardening

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Protecting Night Skies

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The Secret Lives of Wild Bees 

Rainwater Harvesting

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