Airlie Gardens

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Enter the curious world of insects and plants with Matt Collogan, environmental educator program manager for Airlie Gardens

Usnea, with the flat spore-producing disks in the image above, is a fruticose lichen that has been used medicinally for at least 1000 years.

Goldenrods are extremely important to insect populations; aside from their nectar they are a larval host for many species (115 lepidopteran sp!) and attract insect predators as well.

The turtles seen here are probably yellow-bellied sliders. Although adults are omnivorous, the juvenile feeds heavily on insects.
2011 Year of the Turtle

The larvae of Bagworms, in the Psychidae family of lepidopterans, manufacture these protective cases from leaves, twigs and silk soon after they hatch.
These natural engineers have caused them to be the subject of bio-inspired applications and products.

Although adult cardinals can eat seeds and fruit, insects are an important part of the nestlings’ diet. Native plants ensure a healthy food supply for their young.

Thanks Matt!  for sharing your wealth of knowledge about living networks—from the network of mycelial mats below our feet to the ecological network of goldenrods.
and thanks to Airlie Gardens! Visit Airlie Gardens

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