The Cherry Creek project involves transforming an underutilized space into a native pollinator/wildlife habitat. The location is directly behind the UNL Extension in Lancaster County office in Lincoln, Nebraska.
Inspiration: In the fall of 2012, we attended “Becoming an Outdoors Woman” weekend in Halsey, Nebraska sponsored by Nebraska Game and Parks. One of the sessions focused on the challenges of increasing our native pollinator population. Pollinators include both insects and wildlife. We left the session with a handmade native bee nest box, information and motivation to spread the message about the importance of encouraging native pollinators in our community.
We asked for a space to create an insect hotel/native pollinator site and we got so much more!
The Cherry Creek Site: The site we are using for this project has some challenges. There is a noticeable grade and problems with erosion from water draining off the roof of the building. The soil is clay and compacted with rock/gravel in places. We plan to use plants and landscape features like berms to reduce the erosion. Where we can, we’ll use compost to amend the soil. The obsolete satellite dish in the photo above has already been removed, but we’ll be utilizing the post. There is a shallow wetlands/creek bordering the northern edge of the site and it needs a good cleanup – trash. There are already some pollinator plants, cattails/reeds and trees suitable for wildlife. We know deer use the space and we’ve photographed raccoons.
We’re walking the talk: MJ and her family built an insect hotel using recycled/natural materials and installed a native bee box at their home. I’ve mounted a homemade native bee box on my garage and have plans to increase “pollinator-friendly plants” in my beds.
It’s our hope this project will serve as an inspiration and provide educational opportunities for master gardeners, youth and others.
Here’s to Sharing the Buzz!
Soni & MJ
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