LancasterFarming.com – Late summer and fall plantings are of key importance for birds and insects, says Judy Semroc, a conservation specialist with Ohio’s Cleveland Museum of Natural History, who recently presented a webinar as part of Butler County Penn State Extension’s fall garden seminar.
Semroc said that some of the best plants, with high pollen-nectar contents for attracting pollinators and aiding migratory species at this time of year, don’t get much respect. That’s because they are actually weeds. She listed jewelweed, sneezeweed, milkweed, ironweed and Joe-Pye weed among the plants with a weed’s bad reputation that shouldn’t overshadow their benefits to autumn’s insects and birds. Berry or fruit-producing weeds like pokeweed also deserve credit for persisting into winter, when birds are most in need of food sources.