Next Meeting: Tuesday, September 18, 2018

6:45 pm-7:00 pm | Social
7:00 pm-8:45 pm | Program
Wood Lake Nature Center
6710 Lake Shore Dr S, Richfield, MN 55423
All meetings are free and open to the public.

Endangered Pollinators, 
a Southeast MN Perspective

Scott Leddy

Wild Ones Twin Cities fall programming begins with a lovingly illustrated talk about the flora and pollinators of high quality remnant prairies in Rushford, Minnesota, and the Root River Valley with notable naturalist and restoration practitioner Scott Leddy. 

A native of the area himself, Scott has been working more than three decades to restore Driftless Area sand and mesic prairies and bluffs (goat prairies), observing and photographing the native plants, pollinators and other insects that inhabit their different ecological niches.  Years of such observation reflect his deep interest in the interconnectivity between pollinators and the host plants they need to survive.

In 2014, Scott conducted the first native bee survey ever done in southeastern Minnesota, as well as prairie remnant butterfly surveys.  In the seven years working as Meadowlark Restorations, he performed fourteen native prairie restorations, on both private and public lands, along with the native bee and prairie remnant butterfly surveys.

Andrena sp. (mining bee) on Dutchman's breeches;
photo by Scott Leddy.
His passion for restoration is also a reaction to the relentless incursion of trees, invasive exotics and other means of habitat degradation. Many of the prairie species he has found in the Driftless Area are no longer found elsewhere, due to habitat degradation even in our most natural areas. Years of work removing trees, watching over burns, and painstaking seed collection show Scott’s respect and love for these prairies.

Great spangled fritillary buttlerly on butterfly milkweed;
photo by Scott Leddy.

In Scott’s words:
“Planting a small prairie or restoring a woodland and, more importantly, maintaining the natural areas that we have is critical because our native habitats have been virtually all but eliminated…Plant diversity directly impacts pollinator abundance and diversity, and that’s what has driven me to spend so much of my life restoring these beautiful places.”

See more pollinator favorites from Scott:    
Hickory hairstreak butterfly on New Jersey tea;
photo by Scott Leddy.

Scott shares a list of his favorite pollinator plants we can incorporate into a prairie planting or a garden to help support pollinator habitat. The list is presented phenologically, chosen to support pollinators with food sources and habitat throughout the seasons. According to Scott, fall is the best time to plant seed of these species if you are attempting to reconstruct a prairie habitat, and it is essential to prepare the site well. In any setting within the region—a garden, a back yard or containers—these will provide a native planting that will be of interest to native pollinators.


*Driftless Area, so called because drift is an old name for till and, where there were no glaciers, no till could be deposited. Over millions of years, erosion has sharply carved the exposed landscape of the Driftless Area into narrow valleys and thousands of bluffs. The flatter surrounding areas, covered with glacial deposits, remain geologically distinct.

Twin Cities Chapter Wild Ones • 4th Annual Member Only Tour

Saturday, August 11, 2018

You are invited to join other members of Wild Ones on a field tour to Root River Valley near Rushford, Minnesota.

Our trip leader will be Scott Leddy, a naturalist and restoration practitioner who is intimately familiar the diverse plants of this region along with the wildlife they support. Scott has referenced several sites we may tour, some are rolling hills, others are steep goat prairies. Members in attendance will choose the sites after  a brief overview the morning of the tour. In addition to plants of the driftless sand prairies, we’ll be keeping an eye out for reptiles, grassland birds, and many pollinators.

Should we decide to venture on to one of the goat prairies, participants who prefer not to climb the bluffs will be welcome to continue exploring the low elevation prairies on their own. All participants should bring sunscreen as well as water and a bag lunch. Our tour coordinator will provide a cooler to store lunches and extra water to refill bottles. Keep in mind that these sites do not have groomed paths and the grass may be tall, brushing against our legs. Appropriate hiking shoes, socks and light-weight long pants are recommended.

Bonus: Scott will be presenting at our Fall Kick-Off September meeting, a fun way to revisit the site and see plants in bloom throughout the seasons. 

Rushford, Minnesota is roughly a 2.5 hour drive from Minneapolis, a bit more if you break at a rest stop on the way down. Carpools are being organized by the tour coordinator. Please consider whether you would like to be a driver or a passenger when registering. To cover cost of gas, passengers should bring $10 to $15 to give to driver, depending on number in car. 

10:30 am | Gather with tour attendees at Jessie Street Java 
Scott Leddy will provide a bit of background and history of area, offering site options to tour based on level of difficulty and what’s in bloom. 
11:00 am to 2:30 or 3:00 pm | Field tour and lunch
Tour at least two, perhaps three sites with a break for lunch along the road. 
How long we tour will be dependent on comfort level of weather and stamina of group. 
At the end of the tour each carpool group will make their own decision on whether to go directly back to Minneapolis, explore more of the Root River Valley area or stop for dinner along the way.

This is a Wild Ones member only event. If you are uncertain of your membership status, contact your chapter membership chair person to verify or renew. If you are not a current member, you can join now or on the day of the tour. 

All attendees must RSVP to tour coordinator via text (612-382-2800) or email ( so we know who to expect, even if you plan on joining us in Rushford. 
Please provide 1) name(s) of all participant(s) and 2) mobile phone number with your reservation. As a courtesy to others, we also need to know if you are no longer able to attend. 
Due to the logistics and and desire to "leave no trace", we will cap registration at 20.

7:30 am | Meet at Nokomis Beach Coffee, 4956 28th Ave S., Minneapolis. 
(Please park cars along 28th Avenue.) 
7:45 am | Depart for Rushford. Goal is to be there by 10:30 am

Contact Julia via text (612-382-2800) or email ( if interested in carpool. Please indicate if you are willing to be the driver. 


Thursday, July 26, 2018 | POLLINATOR PARTY!
5-8 pm |Lyndale Park gardens 

The 2018 Pollinator Party will take place on Thursday, July 26, from 5 to 8 p.m. The event will take place at Lyndale Park Gardens (4124 Roseway Road, Minneapolis, MN 55409) on the east side of Lake Harriet. Organization of the Pollinator Party is a cooperative effort by Minneapolis Park & Recreation Board and the U of MN Bee Lab/Bee Squad.

The goal of the Pollinator Party is to promote awareness of pollinators, share expert knowledge and celebrate pollinators' contributions to our world. We are excited to have a diverse range of exhibitors. Thank you for sharing your time and energy to help the pollinators!

Here is a link to the Pollinator Party Event Page (Facebook).


Saturday, July 28, 2018 | Nokomis East Gateway Garden

Native plant demonstration garden at East 50th Street and Hiawatha Ave. S., Minneapolis MN (NW corner). 

Enjoy a visit here to imagine how native plants can find a place in your yard. In 2010, a beautiful native perennial planting of wildflowers, prairie grasses and trees emerged from an unused barren  half-acre lot. It is a monarch magnet, especially during migration. The gardens are a community collaborative effort between the Nokomis East Neighborhood Association, Metro Transit, the City of Minneapolis and local residents. Colbert/Tews, landscape architects created a garden design of a monarch wing when seen from an aerial view.

Wild Ones Twin Cities will have an informational table at the gardens and offer plant talks. WOTC is part of a national nonprofit organization whose purpose is to provide learning and field experiences to those interested in native plant landscaping and environmental education.

Autographed bee and pollinator books by local author Heather Holm, will be available. Her latest book titled Bees: An Identification and Native Plant Forage Guide, has won five book awards including the 2018 American Horticultural Society (AHS) Book Award. 

September 8, 2018 
10th Annual Monarch Festival – Festival de la Monarca
This year’s Monarch Festival will occur on Saturday, September 8, 2018, from 10 am to 4 pm.  The Festival celebrates the monarch butterfly amazing 2,300 mile migration from Minnesota to Mexico with music, food, dance, hands-on art, native plant sales and plenty of opportunities to get up close with monarch butterflies, learn about their habitats, and what you can do to make a difference.

The Festival will be held just east of the Lake Nokomis Community Center in the area bounded by E. Minnehaha Parkway, Woodlawn Boulevard, and E. Nokomis Parkway.

SUMMER 2018 Wild Ones Gardeneering at NOKOMIS NATURESCAPE

Gardeneering Information (for more, click here)

NN Gardeneer Coordinators are: 
Vicki Bonk, 612-232-8196, and
Marilyn Jones, 518-928-7819,
  • Regular group gardening sessions begin in May at 6-8 pm on most Tuesday evenings.
  • The meeting time of group gardening sessions changes in late August to 5-7 pm.
  • Gardening is weather permitting - light rain, some heat or cold is fine but with any extreme, a gardening cancellation notice will be emailed to group day of session.

7/24 & 31/Tue ~ NN Gardening 6-8pm
7/28 ~ MPRB Pollinator Party at Lyndale Gardens

8/7, 21, 28/Tue ~ NN Gardening 6-8pm | Time change later in month to 5-7pm
8/16/Thu ~  Wells Fargo Volunteers at NN | 1-4pm, 2 + NN gardeners help requested

9/4, 11 & 28/Tue ~ NN Gardening 5-7pm

(Wild Ones Meeting on the  9/18/Tue)
9/8/Sat 10am - 4pm ~The Minneapolis Monarch Festival

10/9 & 23/Tue ~ NN Gardening 5-7pm
(Wild Ones Meeting on the  10/16/Tue)


2018 Wild Ones Twin Cities 
Native Plant Tours 
Join us on summer tours of native landscapes in and around the Twin Cities!
All three tours are free and open to the public!

Friday, June 8 | 3:00 pm
Tour native plants on the Roof of City Hall 

350 S 5th St, Minneapolis, MN 55415             
Meet at the City Hall Rotunda  

Tour by Nathalie Shanstrom 
Registered Landscape Architect
Pasque Ecological Design and Consulting, LLC

Established: 2008

Purpose: stormwater management, extend roofing membrane lifespan. 
Plants include 43 species of native plants, including Jacob’s ladder, Cranesbill, Columbine, large leaved aster, partridge pea.       

Benefits of Native Roof: stormwater management, wildlife       

Evidence of pollinators and birds: lots of pollinators and other insects observed.

The green roof at the Minneapolis City Hall and Courthouse building is buzzing with honeybees, thanks to a donation from the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community, which donated the bees from its own apiaries.

The project will serve as a demonstration green roof for residents and businesses considering starting their own green roof projects. 

Saturday, June 30* | 10:30 am to Noon 
*date change: originally June 23d
Sustainable Yard & Home - Come to be inspired!

4136 5th Ave S., Minneapolis, MN 55409

Join native plant and pollinator expert Dave Crawford and homeowner and designer Chris Burda for a walk through a yard landscaped to support native habitat and a home designed for aging in place. Arrive promptly at 10:30 for an overview of the homeowner’s mission to integrate sustainability and accessibility, followed by informal conversations about the native plants and pollinators and a tour of stormwater management practices at work. 

Guide through Native Yard: Dave Crawford, Volunteer Naturalist
Dave Crawford will share his knowledge of the native yard, his holistic philosophy and suggestions for keeping plants and pollinators happy. His stunning photographs of pollinators will fascinate you. Dave and his wife Diane, who are currently building a home that is sustainable and designed for aging in place, will have their architecture and landscape plans on hand for those interested in the process.

“Dave is one of the most talented and committed people I know who are working to improve native plant diversity in our landscapes, both urban and in our MN State Parks. His own yard is a living example of how to allow huge diversity of natives to thrive both front and back. He has basically eliminated mowing any lawn. Even though he lives on dry sand he doesn't have to irrigate. He holds regular garden parties to bring neighbors and friends together to see up close how easy and beautiful this can be. He is inspiring other State Park Naturalists to work with volunteers to collect seed and help expand the restoration of natives within formerly disturbed park lands.” 
—Douglas Owens-Pike, Project Manager of Sustainable Lawncare Training and Crew Oversight at Metro Blooms and author of “Beautifully Sustainable”, a realistic Guide to Sustainable Landscaping

Tour of Stormwater Management Practices and Universal Design Features: Chris Burda, Homeowner &  Designer
Chris Burda will offer a tour of water management features designed to keep stormwater on the property in accordance with goals of the City of Minneapolis and with Minnesota GreenStar Certification. She turned to Metro Blooms and to Douglas-Owens Pike for guidance and implementation of a landscape plan that she describes as a project-in-constant-progress. It combines mostly natives with a few treasured non-natives from Mom and Grandma. Her goal to integrate an energy efficient building, sustainable landscape and universal design was not without challenges. She’ll share a few lessons learned and the joys of friendships made along the way. It takes a community.

Chris is an exhibit developer and designer serving museums, educational non-profits and community groups, translating ideas into fun and accessible indoor and outdoor experiences. Long time staffer with the Science Museum of Minnesota, she now works independently, currently with the Bakken Museum in Minneapolis and with the Virtual Science Center in San Jose. She helps people change the world, one space at a time. As a Board member with Minnesota Renewable Energy Society she advocates for clean energy as one way to fight climate change. 

July 14, 2018 | 10:15 am to 2:00 pm
Native Landscaping in Mendota Heights

Addresses and directions will be given out at the first stop on the tour: 
1704 Vicki Lane, Mendota Heights, MN 55118

#1 | Leslie Pilgrim 

For nearly seven years, this 1/2 acre yard has been slowly transitioned from a conventional to a native landscape. Approximately 75% of the vegetation is now native flowers, grasses, shrubs, and trees. Most lawn has been removed and replaced with vegetation or mulch. The home is circled by various gardens including two "unmanicured" native gardens, a formally landscaped hillside in the backyard, as well as wooded sideyards. Sprinkled throughout the property is whimsical artwork, water sources for birds, and windchimes.

# 2 | Kraus Native Landscape 

When we began talking nearly a decade ago about plans for an addition to our house, we knew that changes to our back yard would also be needed to make room for the new space.  This presented an opportunity to replace our functional, yet unappealing concrete-block retaining wall filled with non-native trees, shrubs, and landscaping stones with something more in keeping with our natural Minnesota landscape.  The desire was to create an outdoor space that evoked images of the North Shore and included native grasses and forbs found here in northern Dakota County.

When the home addition was finally completed seven years ago we hired a professional landscaping company to install the hardscape for our yard, which includes a rock wall built with large boulders from a quarry in Dresser, WI (i.e. “Dresser trap rock” boulders), a circulating stream that runs through one end of the rock wall, and a brick paver patio between the rock wall and the house.  We also took the opportunity to build a small rain garden in one side yard to help retain and filter water from our eaves troughs and sump pump discharge.

A year after the addition was completed we began work on the design and installation of the native plantings with the help of Tennant Landscaping (located in Hastings, MN).  Plants were selected to include a mixture of different sizes, textures, colors and bloom times, as well as to attract a variety of birds, insects, and other native critters.  The earliest plants begin blooming soon after the snow disappears (Prairie Smoke), and the last disappear just as the ground begins to freeze (Aromatic Aster and Sky Blue Aster).  In between we enjoy a wide variety of flowering plants (Wild Lupine, Swamp and Butterfly Milkweed, Joe Pye Weed, Pale Purple and Purple Coneflower, Prairie Coreopsis, Fireweed, White Wild Indigo, Rattlesnake Master, Rough and Meadow Blazingstar, among others) and grasses (Prairie Dropseed and Little Bluestem).

Care of the yard begins each spring with the clearing of the previous year’s dead plants once the first shoots of green begin to appear from the plant bases.  (Dead plants are left in place during the fall and winter, both as a source of food and habitat for insects and animals and because they add visual appeal to the wintery landscape.)  Now several years post-installation, maintenance mostly includes weeding (a job that recurs throughout the growing season) and annual or biannual application of hardwood mulch.  It took about two years for the plants to get fully established, but now that they have matured our two biggest challenges (besides the weeds) are keeping more successful species from dominating others and replacing certain species that have been lost to hungry rabbits (Prairie Phlox, Oxeye, and Prairie Clover have been particularly hard hit).  We did install a drip-line irrigation system when the rock wall was installed, but this was only used during the first summer that the plants were installed.

It has been a labor of love to create and tinker with the native spaces in our back yard, and our appetite for adding to them grows each year.  It has been a source of great fun and learning for our entire family.  We hope you’ll enjoy spending time in our native garden as much as we do!

#3 | Sue Light 

The garden is situated on a lot behind the house that starts at the house and slopes toward a small lake. In the summer of 2012, the homeowner decided to convert a conventional garden to a native garden for the health of the lake.  She was also tired of the labor involved in maintaining a conventional garden on a slope. 6 years later it is a beautiful, lower maintenance garden with many more beneficial insects and even a few new bird species visitors. Part of the garden is sunny and part is in shade, so the spring highlights the woodland garden and the sunny, prairie plants shine in the summer.

Invasive plants such as buckthorn and reed canary grass have always been a challenge, and in 2017 a new invasive, Japanese Hedge Parsley was found in the sunny areas of the garden. Time spent managing these invasive plants and other garden chores averages about one or two hours/week during the growing season.  Since 2012 no supplemental water, fertilizer or soil amendments have been needed.


SUMMER 2018 Wild Ones Gardeneering at NOKOMIS NATURESCAPE

Gardeneering Information (for more, click here)

NN Gardeneer Coordinators are: 
Vicki Bonk, 612-232-8196, and
Marilyn Jones, 518-928-7819,
  • Regular group gardening sessions begin in May at 6-8 pm on most Tuesday evenings.
  • The meeting time of group gardening sessions changes in late August to 5-7 pm.
  • Gardening is weather permitting - light rain, some heat or cold is fine but with any extreme, a gardening cancellation notice will be emailed to group day of session.

6/5, 12, & 26/Tue ~ NN Gardening 6-8pm
6/19/Thu ~  Wells Fargo Volunteers at NN | 1-4pm, 2 + NN gardeners help requested

7/3, 10, 24 & 31/Tue ~ NN Gardening 6-8pm
7/19/Thu ~  Wells Fargo Volunteers at NN | 1-4pm, 2 + NN gardeners help requested
TBA ~ MPRB Pollinator Party at Lyndale Gardens

8/7, 21, 28/Tue ~ NN Gardening 6-8pm | Time change later in month to 5-7pm
8/16/Thu ~  Wells Fargo Volunteers at NN | 1-4pm, 2 + NN gardeners help requested

9/4, 11 & 28/Tue ~ NN Gardening 5-7pm

(Wild Ones Meeting on the  9/18/Tue)
9/9/Sat 10am - 4pm ~The Minneapolis Monarch Festival

10/9 & 23/Tue ~ NN Gardening 5-7pm
(Wild Ones Meeting on the  10/16/Tue)




Quest for Resilience: Adaptive Strategies for Sustainable Planting Design by Cayte McDonough

Suggested by WOTC member Leslie Pilgrim. Thank you!