So we are all in this together. You, me, the butterflies, the raccoons, the bees. To protect some of your butterflies over the winter, don’t get so aggressive with the fallen leaves. Rake them under your shrubs where the butterflies can be nestled in for the cold winter and emerge in the spring. Even a few salamanders can wedge themselves into the spaces left.
It was a hard year for the monarchs, but those of you working with the Loudoun Wildlife Conservancy did your part beautifully to help the ones you could. Many folks have heard the call for more milkweeds in home landscapes as well as other native plants to help the other pollinators. Good news.
People are extending themselves for the benefit of critters that will never know them. We can’t make pets out of the bees or butterflies but we can understand that our future is tied to theirs.
We had our first meeting of our new Blue Ridge Chapter of Wild Ones out at Blandy in early September and were delighted with a good crowd of members and guests who are interested in developing more natural landscapes. This month we had a field trip out to Rappahanock to see Janet Davis and her wonderful native plant nursery. A nice group of people united in the belief that while we are here we can make things a bit better if we try.
While I hate to see October go, I am always reminded of Katherine White, wife of E.B., who, in the last stages of cancer, supervised the planting of daffodils for a spring she would never see. Those of us who have been lucky so far can, at the very least, plant more spring bulbs...and shelter the overwintering butterflies.