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The Longfellow Wildlife Project is an effort to certify the neighborhood of Greater Longfellow as a wildlife habitat under the National Wildlife Federation's Garden for Wildlife program. Interested in certifying your yard?  Get started here >> Know a business, school, or public space that you'd like to get certified? Contact us for more information. Learn more: Why are wild spaces so important? How will we all benefit from this project? How close are we to being certified as a neighborhood?
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The National Wildlife Federation officially certified the Greater Longfellow neighborhoods of Hiawatha, Howe, Longfellow, and Cooper as a Community Wildlife Habitat on August 10th, 2021.  A five year community effort involving 173 households, 5 local schools, 6 local businesses/common areas, and the Longfellow Community Council. Celebrate this achievement at the Longfellow River Gorge Festival on Sept 11th from 1-5pm.  Location:  West River Parkway between 34th and 36th st.  There will be more info about the project, canoe rides, rowing, music, children's activity area, and ice cream (while supplies last!).
SPECIAL ONLINE EVENT Rusty Patched Bumblebee Identification Elaine Evans, UofM Extension/BeeLab Thursday, April 15 th  2021 7-8pm (Zoom link below) Learn how to find and identify the Minnesota State Bee (and a federally endangered species), the Rusty Patched Bumblebee (and how to distinguish them from the more common Bumblebees in Minneapolis).  This is especially helpful for anyone that has participated in the Lawns to Legumes program designed to develop a richer Bumblebee habitat, and anyone that wants to learn more about Bumble Bees! Did you know that your Minneapolis garden could be supporting an endangered species? We need your help tracking populations of the endangered rusty patched bumble bee. Learn to identify the rusty patched and other common bumble bees as well as help inform research and recovery by participating in public monitoring efforts. We will also share other actions you can take to help the rusty patched and other pollinators.   Elaine Evans is a Unive

Lawns to Legumes April 2020 Update

Everyone has been talking about seeing big Bumblebees flying around lately (or accidentally digging one up from the ground or leaves!).   I finally just saw one flying around a few minutes ago.   It seemed to be finding a few of the flowers that are just barely opening right now in my yard. If you see a big fat Bumblebee in April, and for the next few weeks too, you can be rest assured that is a Queen Bumblebee.   As Bumblebees do, their entire family died off in the fall, and this mated female (called a gyne) is responsible now for waking up from hibernation, getting pollen/nectar right away for strength, then looking for a place to make a nest and raise this year’s generation of Bumblebees.   Quite a responsibility! The early pollen/nectar sources in April and May actually don’t come from too many small flowering plants, but rather native trees and shrubs, such as Red Maple, Black Cherry, American Basswood, Serviceberry, Redbud, Dogwoods, Pussy Willow, Elderberry, Amer

Habitat Recipes

Monarch Butterfly Food:  Meadow Blazingstar is a favorite nectar source for adults, but they will also peruse Joe Pye Weed, Purple Coneflower, etc) Water: Cover: nearby forbs, grasses, shrubs, and trees. Place to Raise Young: Milkweed Plants (larvae are 100% dependent on Milkweed plants - Common, Swamp, Butterfly, or Whorled Milkweed) Hummingbird Food: lots and lots if small bugs, especially to feed to young.  Adults attracted to the nectar of long tubular flowers, epecially red and orange colored flowers. Cardinal Flower and Colimbine are excellent plant choices.  I've also seen them on Morning Glories, which are natibe to Central America (hummingbirds migrate all across North and South America, so they are quite familiar with some of the plants that we grow as "annuals" this far north) Water: probably derive from nectar, but a waterfall or fountain with lots of spray might be attractive to hummingbirds. Place to Raise Young: they make a very small n