We need your help! Medina County Commissioners gave permission to turn a lawn into a prairie to create a pollinator friendly habitat. As we hear about our bees and butterflies being in trouble, we asked ourselves what can we do to help? Three acres of grass are mowed around our building every week during the summer. This area can be converted into a pollinator habitat by adding plants and flowers that will attract Monarch butterflies, hummingbirds and bumblebees.
Our concept plan includes five different demonstration plots, including a rain garden, to give landowners several ideas on what they can do in their own yards to help slow down stormwater and help pollinators at the same time.
Q: What is a prairie? Why are they important?
A: Native plants provide important benefits over the vast lawns we are used to seeing around many public buildings. Among them are: deeper root systems that help curtail flooding, lower maintenance costs, less need for fertilizers and pesticides that can pollute water and creation of habitat for wildlife, especially the declining pollinators that are vital to our food and agriculture systems.
Q: Who is involved?
A: Bill Stitt came up this idea as he drives around Medina County and sees all the industrial park lands being mowed. He is National Wildlife Federation Habitat Steward. A small committee has been formed with five members. The agencies represented are: Medina County Soil and Water Conservation District, Medina County Building Maintenance, Medina County Park District and National Wildlife Federation.
Q: How will this habitat help Chippewa Lake watershed?
A: The water around our USDA building drains into the Chippewa watershed. Any water that is draining into this lake can be affecting its water quality both good and bad. The deep roots of prairie plants will help to filter the stormwater BEFORE it gets to Chippewa Lake. Some of these native prairie plants have roots that go nineteen feet down into the ground!
A: Total cost to install a demonstration garden like this is between $5000 and $8000, depending on size of plants and trees. If we have enough money to install park benches and a few picnic tables, all the better. A Pollinator Initiative grant was written to cover the cost of seeds, plants, preparation and maintenance however sadly; we did not receive the grant.
Q: What can you do to help?
A: We are asking for your financial help. If you care about nature and conservation in Medina County, if you want your children and your grandchildren to see Monarch butterflies in their lifetime consider sending a donation to support this project.
Questions? Please call Kellie Docherty at 330-722-9321