Backyard Wildlife Sanctuary
Backyard Wildlife Sanctuary, sponsored by the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, offers wonderful resources for bird lovers and includes suggestions for landscape designs that invite other wildlife species to your garden, including butterflies. Also included are construction projects for backyard wildlife, complete with diagrams and instructions. For a small fee you can apply for backyard sanctuary certification; you'll receive a personalized certificate suitable for framing, a yard sign to educate others about your habitat project, and a subscription to the "Crossing Paths" e-newsletter.
Favorite or New Plant
Scabiosa 'Butterfly Blue' and its offspring, Scabiosa 'Pink Mist', are closer than just about any other perennial being everblooming. The soft lavender-blue pincushion flowers of 'Butterfly Blue' appear in early April and are also one of the last to finish. 'Pink Mist' has flowers that are a soft lavender-pink. This plant is shorter but otherwise retains all the repeat-blooming qualities of 'Butterfly Blue'. Both are hardy from USDA zone 5-8, very easy to grow, and virtually disease-free. The handsome foliage is deeply dissected and rounded at the edges, adding a nice textural note, especially when used with bolder-leaved plants. Scabiosas prefer a neutral to slightly alkaline, well-drained soil. Other than needing deadheading and regular applications of water, scabiosas are colorful and carefree additions to sunny flower beds.