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The Hort Report – October 2017 Edition

In Conservatory by dfiik

Autumn on Fire! This time of year we always wish that we had planted more of those striking foliage plants with fall foliage colour. Autumn drives become a spectacular treat as forests of Sugar Maple are set ablaze against a backdrop of feathery yellow Larch and a carpet of glowing Goldenrod – all initiated primarily by shorter daylight hours. The …

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The Hort Report – August 2017 Edition

In Conservatory by dfiik

Photo Credit: Mike White The Ecosystem of a Garden By now your garden should be alive with pollinators – both winged and terrestrial critters. You’ve probably noticed many plant pests lurking around your lush foliage and feasting on your floriferous buffet and you’re scheming and plotting their demise. Hoards of aphids are sucking the life out of your Cup Plants …

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Fun in the Arizona Desert!

In Conservatory by dfiik

Invertebrates in Education and Conservation Conference 2017 – Tuscon Arizona We might be biased, but we think entomologists or “bug geeks” are some of the friendliest and most fun people to hang out with. Similar to any kind of hobby club, when you get together with a group of like-minded individuals who are all passionate about the same things you …

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The Hort Report – July 2017 Edition

In Conservatory by dfiik

Photo Credit: Mike White Planting Perennial Pollinator Gardens We were going to use the title “Butterfly Gardens” but that wouldn’t be accurate. Once you plant a garden loaded with golden pollen and delectable nectar, you will attract butterflies, hummingbirds, bees, hoverflies and other animals that all serve as significant cogs in the ecosystem wheel. These insects and birds are attracted …

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Searching for Ontario’s only Endangered Butterfly

In Conservatory by dfiik

The Mottled Duskywing (Erynnis martialis) Mottled Duskywing Photo Credit: Jessica Linton Supporting butterfly conservation research, especially in our region, is very important to us here at the Conservatory. One such research project we’ve been involved with is the conservation of Ontario’s only endangered butterfly, the Mottled Duskywing.   On Saturday June 3, 2017 our Naturalist along with a group of …

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Monarch Mania!

In Conservatory by dfiik

The Monarchs are Back! The children & grandchildren of the overwintering Monarchs in Mexico have traveled thousands of kilometres back up through the United States and into Canada and are now being seen at their northernmost limit. The northern limit of monarchs is determined by the range of their host plant, milkweed, on which they lay their eggs, which can …

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Cecropia Moths

In Conservatory by dfiik

It’s that time of year again – the Cecropia moths are emerging from their cocoons!   Cecropias overwinter as pupae, snuggled in their cocoons until the warmer weather signals to them that it is time to emerge as adult moths.   Like most silk moths, Cecropia moths lack mouth parts so they only live for a couple of weeks. They …

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The Hort Report: June 2017 Edition

In Conservatory by dfiik

What a wonderful time of year – we get to enjoy the fruits of our labours while the gardens are still bug-free! Now Showing: Blankets of Moss Phlox, Rock Cress and Perennial Alyssum paint a lovely canvas this Spring. Other than requiring an occasional replacement plant they are generally maintenance free and enjoyed by many species – mostly humans. Coming …

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National Volunteer Week!

In Conservatory by dfiik

We love our volunteers! Each year during National Volunteer Week, we like to shine the light on our wonderful volunteer team and we invite you to join us in giving them a heartfelt “Thanks!” Did you know that we usually have between 12 – 24 volunteers as part of our amazing team? They devote anywhere between 2 – 6 hours of …

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Butterflies in Winter

In Conservatory by dfiik

Butterflies are sun-lovers, so much so that they can be considered little solar-powered beings who are dependent on the warmth to stay active and fly around. So how on earth could be a butterfly be flying around in winter? It may seem like a strange concept but it’s not uncommon for our Naturalist to receive multiple calls through fall and …