How to Help Feed Pollinators into Late Fall

How to Help Feed Pollinators into Late Fall

The leaves are changing here in Tennessee.  The air is getting cooler in the evening and you can just feel fall in the air.  We are still working around the homestead getting things ready for the cold temperatures that we know are not far away.

Fall is a great time for the birds and bears.  Natural areas are full of seeds and berries, but our pollinators food source is quickly ending.  They have gone all summer feeding off the nectar and pollen in the flowers and then fall arrives and their food source is quickly slowing.

While cleaning up the garden, I noticed the zinnias, marigolds and verbena that were still blooming was swarmed by butterflies and bumblebees.  I had let a large basil plant go to flower and it too was covered with bees.

Pollinator on Zinnia

I’m so enamoured watching them.  They are so wise, totally focused on the task at hand, they know winter is just around the corner and they are doing all they can to prepare.  Read more

Drying Basil

Drying Basil

Our basil is growing and doing great.  Harvesting seems to have started early this year, maybe because I purchased a new species, a simple name “Sweet Basil”.    I did purchase plants instead of planting seeds this year as well.  Anyway, on Friday as I was out walking through and enjoying the garden and I noticed that my basil had some really large leaves, several stems had more than 6-8 leaves on each.    When a stem gets 6-8 leaves on it, prune above the second set to encourage additional growth.  With great excitement, I ran back into the house and grabbed a basket to start harvesting. Read more