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PLANTING FOR POLLINATORS

We’ve honed our magazine, revamping the interior design and highlighting more gardening advice. Our Spring 2021 cover features the many pollinators that visit a single sea holly plant in the UK. The author enlightens readers, identifying every visitor. We’ve added a new column called “Gardening Together” that highlights ways the whole family can plant for pollinators. Plus we now have the top ten pollinator plants, featuring a different geographic location in every issue. Read the preview.

Plant for pollinators has become a rallying cry. We’ve expanded our range of gardening articles accordingly. And we’re bringing you more science than ever before.

SCIENCE, GARDENING, AND MORE

If you enjoyed our free excerpt, consider subscribing to gain access to all 104 pages. In Rusty Burlew’s long-form article we explore how habitat fragmentation weakens populations. We rediscover the work of Charles Henry Turner, who investigated insect cognition in the early 1900s under deplorable working conditions and delve into how training honey bees to forage for a particular scent helped saved Karl von Frisch’s job during the rise of the Nazis in Germany. We bring you:

  • Milkweed for Monarchs
  • The Puzzle of the Pawpaw, a fruit tree native to North America that is also a host to zebra swallowtail butterflies
  • Keeping stingless bees in Mexico
  • Lizards as pollinators
  • And so much more!

The badlands in North Dakota are home to bison and butterflies.

BUTTERFLIES - HERE TODAY, GONE TOMORROW?

Field photographer Bryan Reynolds takes us into the North Dakota Badlands in search of five butterflies that are slipping out of existence. With butterfly scientist Professor Ronald A. Royer he was searching for the Dakota skipper (Hesperia dacotae), a small butterfly that lives in high-quality mixed and tallgrass prairie. They were on the lookout for the ottoe skipper (Hesperia ottoe), whose caterpillars feed on fall witchgrass, little bluestem, and other grasses. Could they spot the arogos skipper (Atrytone arogos), which prefers big bluestem as a host plant? Or the regal fritillary (Speyeria idalia), a prairie butterfly with a deep orange color and unmistakable dark hindwings with two bands of spots? What about the tawney crescent (Phyciodes batesii), which rears its offspring on asters?

The Karner blue butterfly, which requires lupines to survive

BOOK REVIEW

We review In Defense of Plants, a book by author, ecologist, and plant enthusiast Matt Candeias, who views plants as “incredible living organisms that conquered land before any animal crawled out of the ocean.”

Habitat destruction and lack of regular wildfires have reduced the Karner blue butterfly’s only host plant, blue lupine, to a fraction of its former distribution, so recovery efforts require restoration of blue lupine.

Candeias and his colleagues learned that just planting lupine seeds wasn’t going to do the job. Rather, two types of supporting vegetation needed to be in the mix: diverse wildflowers to support a strong pollinator population, and grasses, since the blue lupine seedlings require shade and cool temperatures to thrive.

Subscribe today to read the full issue.

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