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Promoting pollinators   2010
Promoting pollinators   2010
Promoting pollinators   2010
Promoting pollinators   2010
Promoting pollinators   2010
Promoting pollinators   2010
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Promoting pollinators   2010
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Promoting pollinators   2010
Promoting pollinators   2010
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Promoting pollinators   2010
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Promoting pollinators   2010
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Promoting pollinators   2010
Promoting pollinators   2010
Promoting pollinators   2010
Promoting pollinators   2010
Promoting pollinators   2010
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Promoting pollinators 2010

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This lecture was given in July, 2010 as part of the California native plant gardening series ‘Out of the Wilds and Into Your Garden’

This lecture was given in July, 2010 as part of the California native plant gardening series ‘Out of the Wilds and Into Your Garden’

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  • 1. Out of the Wilds and Into Your Garden Gardening with Western L.A. County Native Plants Project SOUND - 2010 © Project SOUND
  • 2. Promoting Pollinators C.M. Vadheim and T. Drake CSUDH & Madrona Marsh Preserve Madrona Marsh Preserve July 3 & 6, 2010 © Project SOUND
  • 3. Did you ever wonder why there are so many types of flowers? © Project SOUND
  • 4. Sex and the single flower Pollination is the act of transferring pollen grains from the male anther of a flower to the female stigma. © Project SOUND
  • 5. Sometimes physicalagents transfer thepollenOnly about 20% of plants are wind pollinatedAnd <1% are water pollinated http://www.annerondepierre.com/wisdomarchive8.htm © Project SOUND
  • 6. So usually the pollinators are living organisms who carry the pollen from flower to flower © Project SOUND
  • 7. Why worry about living pollinators?  They play a key role in the normal functioning of our local ecosystems  > 200,000 plant species worldwide depend on pollination  Imagine life without these plants  They are required for production of many of our food, medicinal and other crops  ~80% of the world’s crop plants depend on pollination – 150 crops in the U.S. alone  A combined annual $20+ billion industry in the U.S  Without them, our gardens would not sustain themselves © Project SOUND
  • 8.  Pollinators are at risk:  Non-native pollinators are vulnerable to environmental factors - limited genetic variability [Example: Honeybee Colony Collapse Disorder]  Native pollinators are at risk due to habitat loss, climate change and use of pesticidesHoneybee Colony Collapse Disorder  Crop production world-wide is decreasing due to decreasing numbers of pollinators  So we all should be worried – and taking action  The third week of June is designated National Pollinators Week (The fourth annual National Pollinator Week was June 21-27, 2010)! © Project SOUND
  • 9. Who are the living (biotic) pollinators?Most common  Bees – of all sizes  Butterflies  Moths  Flies & other fly-like insects  Beetles  Hummingbirds  Ants  BatsLeast common  Even small reptiles & mammals © Project SOUND
  • 10. What can we do to promote our nativepollinators?  Plant the plants they need for food – at all stages of their lives.  Provide places where they can reproduce and provide for their young  Protect them by practicing Integrated Pest Management – limited use of pesticides  Teach others – by word and example – about the importance of native pollinators © Project SOUND
  • 11. Native Plants can be likened to theatrical settings. In its nativehome each plant species is the backdrop and producer of an age-olddrama -- one with a well-rehearsed cast of actors, mostly insects.When an exotic plant or even a native but not locally indigenousspecies is moved to a new land or locale, the cast of actors is leftbehind, and there is no plot, no play, for an interested audience towitness and enjoy.Edward S. Rossfrom Butterfly Gardening, The Xerces Society and The Smithsonian © Project SOUND
  • 12. Why are some plants pollinator magnets? © Project SOUND
  • 13. Plant families & genera that provide nectar & pollen for a wide range of native pollinators  Polygonaceae – Buckwheat Family  Asteraceae – Sunflower family  Lamiaceae – Mint familyEriogonum - Buckwheat  Clematis – Virgin’s Bowers  Phacelia - Fiddlenecks © Project SOUND Grindelia - Gumplant
  • 14. Annual Phacelias are among our best general nectar sources in spring  Many flowers per stalk  Produce lots of high-quality nectarLarge-flowered Phacelia - Phacelia grandiflora  Nectar is easy for many types of pollinators to get to  Open over a long period of time – open ‘up the stalk’  High flower to foliage ratio – lots of energy put into floral production  Easy to grow – under many conditions - dependable Tansey-leaf Phacelia – Phacelia tanecetifolia © Project SOUND
  • 15. * Desert Bluebells – Phacelia campanularia © Project SOUND
  • 16. * Desert Bluebells – Phacelia campanularia  Mojave Desert & N. and W. Sonoran Desert of California  Open dry, sandy or gravelly places below 4000 ft.http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/cgi-bin/get_JM_treatment.pl?4518,4587,4601 © Project SOUNDGary A. Monroe @ USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database
  • 17. Desert Bluebells – an annual desert wildflower  Size:  1-2 ft tall  1-2+ ft wide  Growth form:  Annual wildflower  Mounded to somewhat sprawling shape - attractive  Stems often red-purple in color  Foliage:  Rounded, coarsely-toothed leaves – somewhat like Heuchera  Whole plant hairy/sticky – may cause mild skin allergies, so wear gloves to handlehttp://www.fireflyforest.com/flowers/1886/phacelia-campanularia-desertbells/ © Project SOUND
  • 18. Flowers are a bright, pure blue  Blooms: in spring - usually Feb-Apr. in our area, but may be later  Flowers:  Small-medium size (to 1 inch)  Bell-shaped – typical for Phacelia http://www.hortmag.com/article/desertbluebells/  Bright, intense true blue – iridescent – difficult to photograph  Seeds:  In dry capsules  Relatively easy – no pre-treatment; just plant in place in fall/winter – germinate in spring  Serial sow for longer bloom season  Will reseed – but not extensively –http://www.delange.org/BlueBells/BlueBells.htm usually must re-seed © Project SOUND
  • 19.  Soils:Plant Requirements  Texture: any well-drained; sandy & gravelly soils great  pH: any local  Light:  Full sun (best) to light shade  Water:  Winter/spring: need plenty of water during active growth  Summer: occasional deep water extends blooming; taper off as flowering ends  Fertilizer: fine in poor soils, OK with light fertilizer (like any of our annual wildflowers)  Other: seeds need bare soil/light gravel mulch to germinate; requirehttp://www.theodorepayne.org/mediawiki/index.php?title=Phacelia_campanularia_var._campanulari light as germination cue.a&printable=yes&printable=yes © Project SOUND
  • 20. Annual ‘Pollenator Plants’ can be tucked in anywhere  Spilling out of pots & planters  Along garden paths – often short  Massed for spring color – pairhttp://back40feet.blogspot.com/2008/06/friday-night-botanical-garden.html with Tidy-tips or CA Poppy for a real zing!  Between native shrubs & sub- shrubs  Mixed with native desert grasses  In a rock or gravel garden  Fine in hot places © Project SOUND
  • 21. Advantages of ‘Pollinator Plants’ for the home garden  They are often showy & pretty; usually lots of blooms and attractive scents (remember, they have to attract their pollinators)  They will increase pollination of food plants, leading to better production  They will attract wonderful insects to your garden – hours of entertainment for the whole family (or neighborhood)  They are ecologically sound – an important part of local ecosystems © Project SOUND
  • 22. Plants in the Mint family are among ourbest summer perennial ‘Pollinator Plants’  Many small flowers – and usually long bloom period  High-quality nectar  Due to shape, available to long- tongued pollinators (butterflies, moths, some bees, hummingbirds) Salvia species © Project SOUND Stachys species
  • 23. * Nettle-leaf Giant Hyssop – Agastache urticifolia© 2004, Ben Legler © Project SOUND
  • 24. * Nettle-leaf Giant Hyssop – Agastache urticifolia  Foothills & lower mountain slopes of the west – British Columbia to CA – and east to CO (Rocky Mtns)  Locally in San Bernardino & Santa Barbara Mtns.  Common. Generally woodlands, but many habitats, including open slopeshttp://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/cgi-bin/get_JM_treatment.pl?4745,4753,4755 Another common name is ‘Horsemint’, although several species are known by this name © Project SOUND http://lh4.ggpht.com/_6r6fAoZCPVw/R8gH16PwAnI/AAAAAAAAAKk/AkQPvdqlLzE/HPIM2277.JPG
  • 25. The genus Agastache – you’re going to see it more often….  ~ 30 species of aromatic perennials in the Lamiaceae family.  Predominately found in dry hilly areas of the U.S., Mexico, Japan, and China.  Many have fragrant foliage, their scents ranging from anise to mint and citrus. The leaves are used to make herbal tea, for flavoring, and in medicines  The ornamental flower spikes make a pretty addition to salads.  Very suitable for herb gardens or mixed borders.  Are highly attractive to beneficial insects, including native pollinators.http://www.glenleagreenhouses.com/agastache.JPG © Project SOUND
  • 26. Giant Hyssop: a herbaceous perennial  Size:  2-5 ft tall; shorter in full sun  2-5 ft wide, slightly spreading  Growth form:  Herbaceous perennial; mounded with square stems  Dies back to ground in winter inJ.S. Peterson @ USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database most climates – you may need to cut back (like other Mints)  Foliage:  Large, toothed leaves – like a large Mint  Scented – can be used for teas  Medium green – nice color  Roots: fibrous; woody in mature plants © Project SOUND
  • 27. Giant Hyssop has a long history as a medicinal plant  As a soothing tea (leaves and dried flowers), especially for upset stomach or colds  Leaves are also used as a flavoring or in saladshttp://www.darcyfromtheforest.com/servlet/Categories?category=Herbal+Pr  Mashed leaves were appliedoducts%3AHydrosols to swollen areas  Even sold today as an herbal: therapeutic properties said to include immune system stimulation, fluid level balancing, respiratory system aid, and aiding skin problems. http://www.calflora.net/recentfieldtrips/easternsierras09.html © Project SOUND
  • 28. Pretty, old-fashioned flowers aplenty  Blooms:  In summer, usually June-July in western L.A. Co.  Flowers:  On stalks above the foliage – typical of the Mints; open up along the stem over several weeks  Many tiny flowers – like miniature snapdragons  Color usually lavender-pink; may be white to a darker© 2004, Ben Legler violet  Delicately scented - sweet © Project SOUND
  • 29. Propagation via seed  Let capsules dry to papery brown on the plant  Crush capsules – sift outhttp://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Agastache_urticifolia_seeds.jpg small seeds  Sow in place in fall/winter – or give 1 month cold-moist treatment before planting in spring  Can also propagate from tip cuttings (summer) or division of young shoots (when about 4-6 inches tall) in spring – fairly easy to root http://nativeplants.wordpress.com/2010/03/24/growing-in-the-green-house/ © Project SOUND
  • 30. Giant Hyssop is  Soils:  Texture: just about any well- easy to grow drained soil  pH: any local  Light:  Full sun to part-shade  Will attract more pollinators in sunny spot  Water:  Winter: needs water; winter flooding is fine  Summer: likes a bit of summer water Zone 2 or 2-3 – good under a birdbath  Fertilizer: not picky – fine with organic mulch  Other: spread slowly via rhizomes © Project SOUND
  • 31. Giant Hyssop adds a pastel element to the summer garden  In mixed perennial beds – even mixed with non-natives  In areas with overspray from lawns, near fountains  In the vegetable garden or home orchard – fine with morning sun  Nice addition to a woodland garden – plant in sunny patches  Great bee plant – produces a light, minty-flavored honey  One of the best additions to the butterfly garden © Project SOUNDhttp://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:qxNbk1BRhPMJ:forums.gardenweb.com/forums/load/salvia/msg021927179459.html+Agastache+urticifolia+propagation&cd=29&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=us
  • 32. Providing homes for native pollinators  Native bees don’t build the wax or paper structures we associate with honey bees or wasps, but they do need places to nest, which vary depending on the species.  Wood-nesting bees are solitary, often making individual nests in beetle tunnels in standing dead trees.  Ground-nesting bees include solitaryLearn about how you species that construct nest tunnels under the ground.can construct orpromote native  Cavity-nesting social species—bumblepollinator homes in bees—make use of small spaces, such asyour garden abandoned rodent burrows, wherever they can find them. © Project SOUND
  • 33. The Sunflower family (Asteraceae) provides important food in fall  Bloom in late summer/ fallGoldenbushes – Hazardia & Isocoma  Long bloom season  Nectar and pollen available to many types of pollinators (even ants, beetles)  Lots of small flowers © Project SOUND Baccharis species
  • 34. * CA Broomsage – Lepidospartum squamatum © 2003 BonTerra Consulting © Project SOUND
  • 35. * CA Broomsage – Lepidospartum squamatum  Sierra Nevada Foothills, South Coast Ranges and Deserts to Baja  Sandy or gravelly washes, stream ledges, coastal sage scrub, chaparral, joshua tree woodland  Common on alluvial fans draining the San Gabriel Mtns.http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/cgi-bin/get_JM_treatment.pl?Lepidospartum+squamatum © Project SOUND
  • 36. Broomsages aren’t sages at all…  Lepidospartum - a small genus of three species of flowering plant in the Sunflower family In SM mtns  Known commonly as broomsageshttp://www.researchlearningcenter.com/bloom/species/Lepidospartum_squamatum.htm or scalebrooms.  Native to the southwestern United States and far northern Mexico.  Tall, woody shrubs with stiff twiggy branches that resemble brooms.  Have thin, narrow, needlelike or scalelike leaves and bear yellow daisy flowers.http://www.insectnet.com/photos/flora1/fl_scalebroom.htm © Project SOUND
  • 37. California Broomsage can be a bit homely in the wild  Size:  3-5 ft tall  3-5 ft wide  Growth form:  Woody sub-shrub; herbaceous stems from a woody base  Branches look like brooms (or like Ephedra, if you know that plant)  Foliage:  Tiny, scale-like leaves are well adapted to hot dry climate  Roots: deep; branched© 2001 Thomas M. Elder, M.D. © Project SOUND © 2009 Stanley Spencer
  • 38. Flowers are like Goldenbush or Goldenrod  Blooms: in fall, Aug-Oct.  Flowers:  Small, in sunflower heads – no true ray flowers  Very similar to Goldenbush or Mock Heather (Ericameria)  Plants just covered with flowering heads – very showy in bloom  Seeds:  Small, with fluffy ‘hairs’  Eaten by seed-eating birds© 2004 Dr. Daniel L. Geiger © Project SOUND
  • 39. Important fall habitat plant  Attracts a wide variety of Lepidoptera, Hymenoptera, Diptera, Coleoptera, and Orthoptera  Bees  Flies & beeflies  Butterflies & moths  Beetles  And many, manyhttp://www.fotolog.com/treebeard/archive?v=day&month=8&year=2004&day=29 more © Project SOUND
  • 40. Broomsage takes a  Soils: lot of abuse…  Texture: well-drained  pH: any local including alkali  Light: full sun; takes heat  Water:  Winter: tolerates seasonal flooding  Summer: very drought tolerant; best Zone 1-2 or 2  Fertilizer: none; likes poor soils  Other:  Remember, this is a rather plain plant most of the year – plant accordingly  Best if pruned back after flowering when looks scragglyhttp://www.calflora.net/bloomingplants/scalebroom.html © Project SOUND
  • 41. Broomsage is right at home in the desert garden  Usually used in desert-themed gardens; but fine also for dry streambeds, http://www.timetotrack.com/jay/scalebr4.htm rock gardens  Excellent choice for fall color in hot, dry gardens (better than Goldenbushes)  Fine habitat plant – nectar, seeds, and cover © Project SOUNDhttp://www.researchlearningcenter.com/bloom/species/Lepidospartum_squamatum.htm
  • 42. Three simple things you can do to increase pollinators in your garden  provide a range of locally native flowering plants that bloom throughout the growing season  create nest sites for native pollinators  avoid using pesticides © Project SOUND
  • 43. Most of us know that butterflies can be important pollinators © Project SOUND
  • 44. Butterfly flowers have certain characteristics due to their relationship with their butterfly pollinators  Butterflies are very active during the day and visit a variety of wildflowers. Butterflies are less efficient than bees at moving pollen between plants. Highly perched on their long thin legs, they do not pick up much pollen on their bodies and lack specialized structures for collecting it.Butterflies have goodvision but a weak  Butterflies probe for nectar,sense of smell. Unlike their flight fuel, and typically favor the flat, clusteredbees, butterflies can flowers that provide a landingsee red. pad and abundant rewards. © Project SOUND
  • 45. Butterfly flowers have certain characteristics due to their relationship with their butterfly pollinators  Butterfly Flowers often are:  In clusters and provide landing platforms  Brightly colored (red, yellow, orange)  Open during the day  Ample nectar producers, with nectar deeply hidden  Nectar guides present  May be clusters of small flowers (goldenrods, Buckwheats) © Project SOUND
  • 46. Pollination syndromes: a partial answer to the question ‘why all those types of flowers?’  Pollination syndromes are suites of flower traits that have evolved in response to natural selection imposed by different pollen vectors, which can be abiotic (wind and water) or biotic, such as birds, bees, flies, and so forth.  These traits include flower shape, size, colour, odor, reward type and amount, nectar composition, timing of flowering, etc.  For example, tubular red flowers with copious nectar often attract hummingbirds; foul smelling flowers attract carrion flies or beetles, etc.  Pollination syndromes are excellent examples of convergent evolution. © Project SOUND
  • 47. *Our Lord’s Candle – Hesperoyucca (Yucca) whipplei © 2003 BonTerra Consulting © Project SOUND
  • 48. *Our Lord’s Candle – Hesperoyucca (Yucca) whipplei  Coastal S. California across portions of the Mohave Desert southward into Mexico and northeast to Arizona.  Locally, ssp. intermedia occurs in the Santa Monica Mtns & ssp. parishii occurs along the coastal slopes of the San Gabriel & San Bernardino Mtns.  Ssp. intermedia - coastal sage scrub and chaparral, 0-2000 ft. Usually in areas transitional between maritime and continental influences. Ssp. parishii on foothill slopes http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/cgi-bin/draw_jmap.pl?38c0235501http://www.efloras.org/florataxon.aspx?flora_id=1&taxon_id=242101658 © Project SOUND
  • 49. *Our Lord’s Candle – Hesperoyucca (Yucca) whipplei © 2005 BonTerra Consulting Ssp. intermedia – coastal Ssp. parishii – transverse ranges © Project SOUND
  • 50. Yuccas are interesting succulents  Size:  2-3 ft tall; flower stalk to 10-12 ft  2-3 ft wide  Growth form:  Perennial succulent – evergreen to almost so  Spp. intermedia forms clonal clumps  Foliage:  Foliage in basal rosette  Leaves green to blue-green, bayonet-like with strong, sharp spine on tips  Very decorative – long used in Glenn and Martha Vargas © California Academy of Sciences gardenshttp://www.researchlearningcenter.com/bloom/species/Yucca_whipplei.htm © Project SOUND
  • 51. Sub-species are adapted to local conditions  Subspecies are distinguished by growth form (caespitose or solitary) and color, size, and shape of leaves and flowers.  The five subspecies also differ in phenological development (timing), fruit set, and growth habit. The life history of each subspecies is distinct  Local coastal ssp. intermedia (from Santa Monica mtns.) sends out pups before it dies, so it forms clonal clumpshttp://www.researchlearningcenter.com/bloom/species/Yucca_whipplei.htm © Project SOUND
  • 52. Yucca are useful  Leaves:  Fibers used for rope, mats, sandals, baskets, nets  Roots:© 2009 Stanley Spencer  Source of saponins for soap  Flowers/Flowering stalk:  Young blossoms were eaten raw, roasted, or cooked with wild onions  Flowering stem - raw or cooked. Very young stalks used to make syrup  Seeds were ground & eatenhttp://www.researchlearningcenter.com/bloom/species/Yucca_whipplei.htm © Project SOUND
  • 53. Flowers are spectacular – but rare  Each plant blooms only once, usually at 8-12 years age, before dying  Blooms: in spring, usually Apr-May in coastal areas, a bit later further inland; 2-7 week bloom period (shortest on dry sites)  Flowers:  On a stout flowering stem, 8- 12 ft tall  Color ranges from white (ssp. intermedia) to cream-colored (ssp. parishii)  Flowers bell-shaped, large (1+http://www.calflora.net/bloomingplants/chaparralyucca.html inch) unlike any others G.A. Cooper @ USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database © Project SOUND
  • 54. Yucca seeds are also distinctive  Form inside a hard, leathery capsule – ripe when capsule becomes dry & starts to open J. E.(Jed) and Bonnie McClellan © California Academy of Sciences  Flat black seeds in densely- packed columns  Variable germination rates. To enhance:  Store in moist sand or perlite in refrigerator for several months  Pre-soak seeds for 24 hrs in warm waterSteve Hurst @ USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database © Project SOUND
  • 55. Plant Requirements  Soils:  Texture: not particular, but usually well-drained in nature  pH: any local  Light:  Full sun to light shade  Can take heat, reflected heat  Water:  Winter: adequate  Summer: looks best with occasional summer water (Zone 1-2 to 2)  Fertilizer: none; likes poor soils  Other: older leaves may die; these can be removed to improve appearance.G.A. Cooper @ USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database © Project SOUND
  • 56. Yuccas make unique specimen plants  In community-themed gardens: Coastal Sage Scrub, Chaparral, Desert  In rock gardens and other water-wise gardenshttp://www.baynatives.com/plants/Yucca-whipplei/  On dry hillsides, slopes  As a habitat plant:  The flowers, fruits used by a number of small birds and mammals; provides cover for small animals like lizards  Larval food for the California yucca moth (Tegeticula maculata)http://www.bennyskaktus.dk/images/others_pictures/Alexander_Heim/Yucca_whipplei_GR_Herbst_2008_383.jpg © Project SOUND
  • 57. The CA Yucca Moth - Tegeticula maculata  Very specialized (and old) relationship between Tegeticula maculata and Hesperoyucca whippleii (likely 35-40 million years old)  Classic example of co-evolution:  Moth specialized for pollinating the yucca Northern type  Yucca provides food and environment for development of the larva  Phenotypic variation likely due to founder effect  Y. whippleii also hosts at least three species of non-pollinator "bogus yucca moths." http://plantecology.syr.edu/segraves/PDFs/Segraves%26Pellmyr01.pdfProject SOUND ©
  • 58. Life cycle of the Yucca Moth  Spring nights  Larva pupate, adults emerge from sand- covered underground cocoon  Adults mate  Females collect pollen & form it into a pollen ball.  Female deposits eggs into stigma/ovary of a virgin flower  Pollen ball is then stuffed down the stigma of the virgin flower  Pollinate flowers  Provide food for the larva  Summer/early fall  Larva hatch & grow, eating pollen & seeds  Form a cocoon in the developing seed pod  Fall  Larva fall to ground for over-wintering © Project SOUND
  • 59. The yucca plant and moth are absolutely dependent upon oneanother for reproductive success, yet the terms of their contractare usually complex.  First, the yucca plant must sacrifice a significant percentage of its seeds as food for the moth larvae, although limited feeding damage enhances seed germination. Only a few seeds are actually eaten  Second, if yucca moth females deposit too many eggs within a single flower, the plant can selectively abort that flower, effectively killing all larvae within it. Female moths leave a scent trace after pollination  Finally the yucca-moth mutualism (living together in such a way as to increase each other’s reproductive success) is vulnerable to exploitation by cheaters: other mothhttp://www.smmtc.org/plant_of_the_month_2006 species lay eggs within fertilized flowers but do not pollinate the flower.06_Yucca.htm Limited numbers and hybridization with pollinators © Project SOUND
  • 60. Not all pollinators work during the day….© Paul Mirocha 2004 © Project SOUND
  • 61. Moths are very common – though most people don’t know this  With over 142,000 described species worldwide, moths are a smashing evolutionary success, second among animals only to beetles in number of species.  Over 12,000 species, grouped into 65 families, are found in North America alone.  The moth fauna of the Southwest is particularly rich, as it includes the northern limit of distribution for many primarily Neotropical species.http://www.laspilitas.com/butterflylist_fil  Within the order Lepidoptera, moth specieses/Sphinx_moth-2.jpg outnumber butterflies and skippers nearly 15 to 1, with many species left to be described, especially among the numerous “microlepidopteran” families. © Project SOUND
  • 62. Moths & Butterflies are in the same Order  Moths and Butterflies are very much alike, but there are several characteristics that Moths have that Butterflies dont:  Moths usually have less colorful wings.  Moths have furrier bodies.  The antennas of moths are feathery or threadlike.  Most moths fly at night. One exception to this rule is the Clearwing Hummingbird Moth.  Like Butterflies, Moths go through a metamorphosis where the young change completely before becoming adults. © Project SOUNDhttp://bscit.berkeley.edu/eme/lucidkeys/macromoths/Macromoth%20Key/Moths%20vs.%20butterflies.htm
  • 63. Why are moths so successful? All moths undergo complete metamorphosis. Thus, the typical moth lives 2 ostensibly distinct lives; it is born as a terrestrial, vegetarian eating machine and is “reborn” as a winged creature of the night, hell-bent on completing its reproductive cycle. Yet this is not unusual for insects. Moths share a common body plan with other insects, including a head with large compound eyes and sensitive olfactory appendages (antennae). As in beetles, moths from different families vary widely in wing venation, shape and coloration, larval and adult feeding habits and behaviors, mating systems, population structures, thermal biology, and sizes, ranging from the minute clothes moth (Tineidae) with its ¼ to 3/8 inch (7-10 mm) wingspread, to the bat-sized hawkmoths (Sphingidae) and giant silkmoths (Saturniidae). Unlike beetles, the overwhelming majority of moth species are herbivorous as larvae and adults; there are far fewer examples of carnivores, fungivores, and detritivores among moth lineages. The complex relationships between moths and their host plants may hold keys to understanding why there are so many moths. © Project SOUND
  • 64. Moths, like butterflies, can be ‘picky eaters’  The caterpillars of most moths are highly specialized - eat only one or a few plant species.  Unfortunately, moth caterpillars are infamous for the exceptional cases; the decimation of crop plants by extreme generalists such as the cabbage looper (Trichoplusia ni; Noctuidae), and the destruction of wool clothing and stored grains by moths in the family Tineidae.Humans owe a debt of  The repeated association of certain mothgratitude to moths and other and butterfly lineages with specific familiesinsects for such biochemicalplant wealth, which, quite of host plants worldwide suggests thatcoincidentally, provides us with these relationships are ancient.a pharmacopoeia of naturaldrugs, insecticides, flavors, and  A closer examination reveals complex suitesfragrances. of plant defenses, both chemical (terpenoids, alkaloids, phenolics, cyanide- generating compounds) and physical (hairs, spines, tough leaves, oozing resins, and latex), designed to keep caterpillars at bay. © Project SOUND
  • 65. Moths, like butterflies, can be ‘picky eaters’  Caterpillars, in turn, have evolved numerous strategies to counteract these defenses, from detoxification or rapid excretion of plant toxins to avoidance of older, better defended leaves. Some specialized caterpillars co-opt the toxins from their host plants for their own defenses, and advertise their acquired distastefulness with bright, vivid colors.  There are additional, more subtle levels to the wars between caterpillars and their host plants. When caterpillars remain undaunted by chemical or physical deterrents, plants may use extrafloral nectaries or other foodstuffs to purchase the services of ants and wasps as caterpillar exterminators.It’s a war zone out there! © Project SOUND
  • 66. Caterpillars (of both butterflies & moths) are vulnerable  The scents of wounded leaves and grass, the by- products of caterpillar foraging, are attractive to the parasitic wasps and flies  Caterpillars are also preyed upon by birds, wasps, and other visually foraging predators.  In order to survive, they defend themselves by being distasteful or covering themselves with stinging spines, or through bluff and deceit: they mimic leaves, twigs, galls, flower buds, bird droppings, and even snakes. © Project SOUND
  • 67. Watching moths and their caterpillars can be great fun… © Project SOUND
  • 68. Snowberry Clearwing - Hemaris diffinis  Life history: Adults fly swiftly during the day. Two broods, Mar-Aug.  Caterpillar hosts: Snowberry (Symphoricarpos), honeysuckle (Lonicera), dogbane (Apocynum)  Adult food: Nectar from flowers including milkweed, Monardella, some thistles, Snowberry, Honeysuckles, lantana, lilac, and others. Uses long proboscis, which is curledhttp://www.cirrusimage.com/Moths/Hemaris_diffinis_1.jpg under the head when not feeding, to siphon nectar.  Habitat: A wide variety of open habitats, streamsides, fields, gardens, and suburbs. http://www.butterfliesunlimited.net/Species/diffinis.htm © Project SOUND
  • 69. Caterpillar is a ‘hornworm’  The caterpillar can be found in the leaf litter under host plants.  The caterpillar has yellow markings on both the base of the posterior black horn and across the head. There are also nine dark spiracles along each side.  It pupates in a black cocoon with a covering of leaves as its only protection.  When the moth emerges from the cocoon it has blue-black scales covering the wings. Throughout flight, these scales fall off the wings, leaving them transparent.http://bugguide.net/node/view/2639/bgimage © Project SOUND
  • 70. Snowberry Clearwing is a mimic  Resembles a small hummingbird.  It is diurnal  It takes nectar while hovering.  The wingbeat is not as fast as the hummingbirds but the overall transparency of the wing makes it nearly invisible.  Mimics a bumblebee or wasp for protection.  The fuzzy yellow and black striped thorax and large eyes on the protruding head make this moth easy to mistake for a bee.  It also makes a buzzing sound as it flits from flower to flower, often hovering in mid-air.  With its 1 ¼ - 2 inch wingspan, it also gives the impression of being the size of a bee or wasp.http://home.centurytel.net/Arkcite/clrwing.htm © Project SOUND
  • 71. Creeping Snowberry - Symphoricarpos mollis http://www.timetotrack.com/jay/snowbml.htm © Project SOUND
  • 72. Creeping Snowberry is a ‘Honeysuckle’  Size:  2-4 ft high  2-6 ft wide  Winter deciduous – not long in S. Bay  Growth form: mounded or arching with trailing branches – good cover http://polyland.calpoly.edu/OVERVIEW/Archives/derome/woodlands.htmlLike others in the Honeysuckle family, for birds, small animalsyoung branches are attractive color  Slow-growing © Project SOUND
  • 73. Flowers & berries: understated  Blooms: Mar-May/June  Flowers: small hanging, bell-shaped, pinkish- http://www.timetotrack.com/jay/snowbml.htm white flowers  Berries:  Summer  Snow-white  Fruit: edible but not great  Fruit-eating birds eat it: Mockingbirds, Finches, Towhees, etchttp://www.timetotrack.com/jay/snowbml3.htm © Project SOUND
  • 74. Growing Creeping Snowberry is easy  Light: full sun to full shade – tolerates full sun near coast  Soils:  Any well-drained  Better in neutral to slightly acid pH: 5-7; can use pine- needle or bark mulches  Water: moderate to low summer water – quite adaptable  Nutrients: light fertilizerCan be pruned to the ground to (acid) for more blooms &encourage full new growth, more fruitsflowers & fruits © Project SOUND
  • 75. Creeping Snowberry is versatile shrub  Wonderful for its ‘woodsy’ look  Good performer in shady parts of garden:  North-facing slopes and areas  Under trees (incl. oaks, pines)  Root characteristics bind soils – slopes  Nice with other shade-lovers: Ribes, Douglas Iris, Heucheras  Quite tolerant of urban/suburban conditions  As host plant for Snowberry Clearwing mothhttp://www.nic.funet.fi/pub/sci/bio/life/plants/magnoliophyta/magnoliophytina/magnoliopsida/caprifoliaceae/symphoricarpos/index.html © Project SOUND
  • 76. The moths of dawn and twilight  While earliest fossil moths suggest that they shared the world with dinosaurs and flying reptiles, we probably can never know if or when moths or their ancestors abandoned daylight for a relatively predator-free night.  The main night predators of moths are the batsOenothera elata ssp. hookeriHooker’s Evening Primrose © Project SOUND
  • 77. Moths have developed an array of strategies that enable them to avoid becoming evening snacks for a bat. Many night-flying moths have pairs of ears positioned on both sides of their abdomens that are tuned to exactly the sound frequencies emitted by hunting bats. These sensitive ears allow the moths to eavesdrop on the hunting cries of bats and to attempt to avoid them. Moths have two levels of escape behavior when they hear a bat:  If their bat-detecting ears inform them that a bat is on the way, but still distant, the moth turns away from the direction that the cries are coming from and leaves the area.  However, if the bat gets very close before it is detected, the moth suddenly executes a series of high-speed acrobatic maneuvers, usually ending in a dive for the ground or the shelter of bushes.  Some moths confuse bats by emitting sounds similar to those emitted by a bat closing in on prey. Some moths (which don’t have ‘bat-detecting ears’) are either too small or too large to be suitable bat prey Other moths, which forage at dusk & dawn, have colors and sounds which communicate ‘I’m Too Toxic to Eat’ © Project SOUND
  • 78. Large, night-flying moths are among the most fascinating of creatures  Though moths possess visual systems especially adapted for night life, most species identification and sexual information in moths is communicated via air- borne chemical signals known as pheromones.  Moths and many other insects appear to have only a very limited chemical vocabulary, usually amounting to “Hey baby, I’m a fantastic guy,” and “OK, I’m ready to mate.”  In a large majority of the moth species so far studied, the female determines when mating will occur by releasing her sex-attractant pheromones.  In some moths, a male releases his own unique courtship pheromone and fans it over the female with his wings. The female moth uses the quantity or quality of the male’s pheromone to assess his “quality” as a potential mate. It is interesting that many of the chemical compounds identified from male pheromones are also common components of the scents of flowers. © Project SOUND
  • 79. Ceanothus Silk Moth - Hyalophora euryalus  Life history: Females glue eggs singly or in clumps on leaves of the host plant. The eggs hatch in 9-14 days and the caterpillars eat leaves. The cocoon is spun in the outer part of the host plant and is attached to a twig by only one-half its length.  Wing span: 3.5 - 5 inches (8.9 - 12.7 cm).  Caterpillar hosts: A wide range of plants including buckbrush (Ceanothus), manzanitahttp://nathistoc.bio.uci.edu/lepidopt/saturn/He/He.htm (Arctostaphylos), gooseberry (Ribes), willows (Salix), alder (Alnus), Laurel Sumac (Malosma laurina) and mountain mahogany (Cercocarpus betuloides)  Adult food: Adults do not feed.  Habitat: A wide variety of habitats including coastal areas, chaparral, and conifer forests. © Project SOUND
  • 80. Ceanothus Silk Moth larva are fearsome!  Larva are voracious eaters!  Cocoon is a large oval structure, usually slightly pointed at one end.http://nathistoc.bio.uci.edu/lepidopt/saturn/He/He.htm © Project SOUND http://nathistoc.bio.uci.edu/lepidopt/saturn/He/He.htm
  • 81. Giant Moths are more common than most people think  Ceanothus Silkmoth flies primarily late at night, its mating flight usually between 3:00 a.m. and dawn.  Since few people are awake at these hours, most giant moths are considered great rarities by the general public when, in fact, many of these moths, including the present species, may be locally abundant © Project SOUND
  • 82. Hawk or Hummingbird Moths - Order Lepidoptera, Family Sphingidae  Moths in this family are easily identified because they are large and have a characteristic triangular wing shape.  Adults also have an unusually long Very long proboscis (tongue) proboscis that is used to suck nectar from long tube-shaped flowers.  The larvae of many species have a spine or horn at the back end and are called hornworms.http://www.arizonensis.org/sonoran/fieldguide/arthropoda/hyles_lineata.html © Project SOUND
  • 83. White-lined Sphinx moth, Hiles lineata  The most common Sphingid in California. Especially common in desert areas.  Adults have a whitish stripe running the length of the forewing.  During years of heavy winter rains, when there is a wide variety of annual plants that are food for the larvae, this sporadic species may be very common and can occasionally http://people.uleth.ca/~dan.johnson/dj_IRF.htm occur in tremendous numbers.  Adult moths feed on nectar while hovering around blossoms. Because of this behavior, they have often been mistaken for hummingbirds. Adults fly only in late spring and summer.  White lined sphinx moths and other moths in this family are especially important pollinators of desert plants having large white, fragrant flowers. Two favorites are Jimson weed (Datura meteloides) and primrose (Oenothera sp.) which open their flowers at sunset.http://fireflyforest.net/firefly/2006/03/30/white-lined-sphinx-moths/ © Project SOUND
  • 84. White-lined Sphinx Moth Hiles lineata  Larvae brightly colored and conspicuous, varying in color from yellow to black and sporting yellow lines down the length of the body.http://www.arizonensis.org/sonoran/fieldguide/arthropoda/hyles_lineata.html  From April to June can be seen feeding on low growing foliage of desert dandelion (Malacothrix), evening primrose (Oenothera sp.), buckwheat (Eriogonum), sand verbena (Abronia) and wishbone bush or wild four oclock (Mirabilis bigelovii).  Depending on the temperature, thesehttp://people.uleth.ca/~dan.johnson/dj_IRF.htm active crawlers move from the food plants to the ground freely and are easily spotted.  When populations are especially large, the caterpillars can move in great hordes, devouring entire plantshttp://www.silkmoths.bizland.com/hlinelin.htm © Project SOUND
  • 85. Attracting White-lined Sphinx Moth to our gardens is quite easy  Adult food (nectar)  Salvia spp. - Sages  Oenothera spp – Four O’Clocks  Mirabilis multiflora  Sacred datura (Datura wrightii),  Other annual wildflowers  Larval food sources  California fuchsias  Oenothera species (O. hookeri; O. caespitosa)  Very wide host range that includes native Buckwheats, Sand Verbena and non-native portulaca, apple, grape, and others. © Project SOUNDhttp://www.arizonensis.org/sonoran/fieldguide/arthropoda/hyles_lineata.html
  • 86. * White (Tufted) Evening Primrose – Oenothera caespitosa © Project SOUND
  • 87. * White (Tufted) Evening Primrose – Oenothera caespitosa  Plant of the western U.S. into Mexico  Locally, in CA Deserts & desert foothills  Found in open desert scrub, rocky flats and slopes, and playas, sandy washes, grasslands, pinyon/juniper woodlands, up to coniferous and bristlecone pine forestshttp://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/cgi-bin/get_JM_treatment.pl?5263,5471,5473  A member of the evening- primrose family (family Onagraceae), which includes mainly herbs, rarely shrubs or trees with often showy flowers.  Common name after the true primroses, which also have a sweet scent. © Project SOUND http://www.em.ca/garden/native/nat_oenothera_caespitosa.html
  • 88. White Evening Primrose: a perennial wildflower  Size:  1-2 ft tall  1-2 ft wide; spreading slowly  Growth form:  Herbaceous perennial from a woody root; mounded to sprawling  Dies back to ground after blooming in cold climates; may behttp://www.fireflyforest.com/flowers/1725/oenothera-caespitosa-tufted- evergreen in S. CAevening-primrose/  Lives 5-6 years in garden, but may re-seed  Foliage:  Leaves mostly in basal rosette  Elongated, toothed  Roots: taproot + laterals © Project SOUND
  • 89. Flowers are magical at twilight  Blooms: in spring/early summer – usually Apr-May in our area  Flowers:  Open at dusk and close with bright sun the next day – live only a single day  White tinged with pink/ purple – you may think that someone has dropped a Kleenex  Very sweet scent – to attract pollinators  Seeds:  Soak in hydrogen peroxide 24 hr., when cold-moist stratify for 30-120 days (based on source climate)http://www.nazflora.org/Oenothera_caespitosa_marginata.htm © Project SOUND
  • 90. White Evening Primrose has a specific cast of pollinators who work at dusk or dawn  Hawkmoths (White-lined sphinx moth - Hyles )  Native solitary bees (specifically Lasioglossum, Centris, Xylocopa, Andrena)Hawk moth/White-linedSphinx Moth (Hyles lineata) Carpenter Bee Xylocopa spp. Oil-collecting Bee Sweatbee Centris species © Project SOUND Lasioglossum oenotherae
  • 91. Moths are important pollinators in western U.S.  Few people realize that the voracious hornworm, looper and armyworm caterpillars eventually become nectar- feeding adult moths that render important pollination services to many of the same plants.  Moth pollination is more prevalent in the Southwest than in other regions due to warm evenings, hot daytimes, favorable climate, and proximity to the moth-rich canyons and thorn- scrub of northern Mexico.  Moths visit flowers in search of nutritious rewards, usually nectar, and transfer pollen as a consequence of their contact with floral structures and forging movements between flowers.  Many night-blooming plant species, especially in desert grasslands and dune areas, appear to be specialized for moth pollination  However, most moth-pollinated plants employ alternative reproductive strategies. These include self-pollination, recruiting other (diurnal, or day-active) pollinators, or simply waiting for the next flowering season.  Moth pollination is a risky proposition, and moth-flower mutualisms are not very exclusive. © Project SOUND
  • 92.  Soils:Plant Requirements  Texture: any well-drained soil – sandy to clay  pH: any local, including alkali  Light:  Full sun to light shade  Morning sun only in hot, dry gardens  Water:  Winter: needs good winter/spring rains; takes seasonal flooding  Summer: little to moderate water during growing season (Zone 1-2 or 2)  Fertilizer: none needed; likes poor soilshttp://swbiodiversity.org/seinet/taxa/index.php?taxon=672 © Project SOUND
  • 93. Garden uses for White Evening Primrose  As an attractive pot plant – be sure that pot is deep enough to accommodate deep taproot  In the moonlit garden, where its perfume can behttp://web.gccaz.edu/glendalelibrary/GLIS%20Oenothera%20caespitosa.htm appreciated  As a groundcover  On banks and slopes  With other water-wise plants like penstemons  Perfect for rock gardens  In the pollinator garden © Project SOUND http://www.windmillnurseryinc.com/m12_view_item.html?m12:item=119
  • 94. Characteristics of flowers that attract large dusk-to-dawn flying moths  Night-blooming  Large size – often > 1 inch  Light color – often white, but may be light yellow or pink  Tubular shape – those that attract the large moths  Sweetly scented – may be overpoweringly so © Project SOUND
  • 95. If you like the idea of moth pollinators – but desire a bit more color Perhaps the Four O’Clocks are more appropriate © Project SOUND
  • 96. * Colorado (Giant) Four O’Clock – Mirabilis multiflora http://www.swcoloradowildflowers.com/pink%20enlarged%20photo%20pages/mirabilis.htm © Project SOUND
  • 97. * Colorado (Giant) Four O’Clock – Mirabilis multiflora  Southwestern U.S. from CO to CA and S. to Mexico  Locally in Tehachapi Mtns and Mojave Desert  Open, sandy hillsides & mesas; http://www.efloras.org/florataxon.as juniper & pinyon communities; 2500 to 6500 ft. px?flora_id=1&taxon_id=242415050http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/cgi-bin/get_JM_treatment.pl?5194,5221,5231 http://www.comstockseed.com/Images/four%20oclock.JPG © Project SOUND
  • 98. The genus Mirabilis .. very interesting  Common name: Four o’ Clocks  In Four Oclock family (Nyctaginaceae). This family contains 28 genera and about 250 species.  The largest genus of the family ishttp://a.gerard4.free.fr/images3/Mirabilis_jalapa.jpg Mirabilis with about 60 species.  Name Mirabilis - Latin for "miraculous or wonderful"  The plant literally “erupts from nothing” – it truly is a “miracle”  The flowers open and close daily  May also be a reference to the beauty Wishbone Plant of these plants Mirabilis laevis © Project SOUND
  • 99. Giant Four O’Clock – herbaceous perennial  Size:  1-2 ft tall  3-6 ft wide  Growth form:  Herbaceous perennial from a woody root; long-lived  Plant sprawls like a groundcover – http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Category:Mirabilis_multiflora or can be more shrubby  Entire plant quite succulent  Foliage:  Often blue-green but may be light green, toxic (don’t eat)  Leaves simple, succulent, may be sticky  Roots: very long and large taproot; don’t try to move established plant © Project SOUNDhttp://www.swcoloradowildflowers.com/pink%20enlarged%20photo%20pages/mirabilis.htm
  • 100. Flowers are fantastic!  Blooms: in spring/summer; usually May-June in S. CA  Flowers:  Large size (up to 1 inch)  Trumpet-shaped; ‘petals’ are actually colored sepals  Many – plant is covered with blooms  Very showy, amazing, sweetly scented  Flowers open in late afternoon, close in the morning  Attract many nocturnal insects, including the hawkmoths Sphinxhttp://www.wildflower.org/plants/result.php?id_plant=MIMU chersis and Eumorpha achemon (the pollinators) as well as pollen- collecting bees visiting at dusk and dawn. © Project SOUND
  • 101. Big, easy-to-grow seeds  Ripe seeds are often dark – not green; tip ripe seeds out of the papery capsules  Plant seeds in spring – needhttp://www.dbg.org/index.php/gardening/octobercalendar daytime temps of 70º F  Lightly sand hard seed coat – just roll seeds on a sheet of sandpaper  To break seed dormancy, put them in a small thermos filled with very hot water, and let them stay in there for 2 days.Steve Hurst @ USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database  Then rinse and sow © Project SOUND
  • 102. One hardy plant!!  Soils:  Texture: any  pH: any local  Light:  Full sun near coast  Morning sun in very hot gardens  Water:  Winter: needs adequate  Summer: don’t over-water; Treat as Zone 1-2  Fertilizer: none needed – can take light fertilizer, but best with rock mulch  Other: cut off dead branches in fall/winter © Project SOUND
  • 103. Giant Four O’Clock looks like a garden perennial  Excellent in mixed beds of water-wise shrubs and perennials  As a water-wise ground-cover  Used for erosion control on slopes  Attractive draping a retaining wall.  Showy, bright color in spring- summer  Excellent addition to the pollinator garden © Project SOUNDhttp://www.waterwiseplants.utah.gov/default.asp?p=PlantInfo&Plant=192&Cart=
  • 104. Tips for creating an enjoyable moth garden Locate your ‘moth flowers’ so you can enjoy your nighttime experience.  Situate your moth garden in an area that you can easily access after sundown, such as a porch, deck, courtyard or patio.  Another prime location is a front-entry garden or one that borders a walkway, where you will see the moths when you come home.  Extend the experience by growing night-bloomers near a window or in hanging baskets and window boxes so you can enjoy their presence and enticing night fragrances from inside your home. Use a combination of ‘moon garden’ plants and garden lighting to make your moth garden more magical and night-friendly.  Use landscape lighting to illuminate certain features and light up a path.  Or create visual impact with icicle lights weaving through an arbor or draped through a tree.  Add the sound of moving water and the stage is set Then sit back and enjoy the show – it’s cheap and has lots of romance and thrills!! © Project SOUND

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