We have habitat for wildlife!

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Narrow Leaf Milkweed provides food for Monarch Butterfly Larva

“I hear…I forget
I see…and I remember
I do…and I understand”
Ancient Chinese Proverb

Scarlet Monkey Flower

We are beginning to provide habitat for wildlife— food, water, shelter and a place to raise their young. On June 30th, I was delighted by the sight of a hummingbird enjoying the Scarlet Monkey Flower, along with a pair of mating monarch butterflies on the Narrow Leaf Milkweed at the Schoolyard Habitat at Matilija JH.

a place for water

bird bath provides summer water for wildlife

When the Ventura River, San Antonio and Thacher Creeks dry up in the summer, access to water is especially important. Wildlife prefer to drink from ground level. To provide temporary access to water, we converted an old drinking fountain into a makeshift bird bath (actually, the old water fountain had been dismantled many years ago).  This provides insects and birds with access to shallow water (not deep water) which is important during the hot summer months. Who is going to keep that water flowing over the summer when students, teachers and faculty are gone?

No rain is expected until sometime in November/December (but who really knows these days?). The native plants in the Schoolyard Habitat were planted in February 2012 and still need to be watered over the summer months, once every 2 weeks, with a slow, deep water (either early in the morning or early evening once it has cooled off) until the plants get established.

Any volunteers ready to help with watering? Send an email to Matilijasyh@gmail.com or call Renee Roth @ 805-798-3897

Below is desert willow in bloom, which also attract hummingbirds and grows 15-30 ft tall with a 15-25 ft spread, in well drained soil.

Desert Willow, Chilopsis Linearis

Desert Willow, Chilopsis Linearis

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