Blossoming Greywater Garden!

Our native plant greywater filtration garden is thriving!

~ changes from winter through spring ~

Last fall 2018, we installed a garden to filter our greywater. Now it’s spring 2019 and it’s thriving in full bloom! You can see how the garden got started, funded, and finished in this post.

Our native plants are doing great: the Dwarf Little Henry Sweetspire leafed out and bloomed white cheddar cheetos (not literally, but fun to see!). They did smell sweet! My favorite, the butterfly milkweed (Asclepias tuberosa) survived the winter and is blooming tiny orange-red sunsets. The swamp milkweed (Asclepias incarnata) is getting very tall and lush, and should bloom pink in the summer. Both milkweed varieties attracted monarch butterflies this year, who laid eggs that hatched into dozens of caterpillars. At least one plumpy survived to get big, but I didn’t see a chrysalis. Pollinators have been loving this little native ecosystem!

The greywater garden overlooks Kessler Mountain and the Johnson Barn.
Swamp milkweed emerges from the mulch.
Butterfly weed emerges (we have 3 of different sizes, same age).
Young monarch caterpillars on butterfly weed in early spring.
Blooming butterfly weed (asclepias tuberosa) a native milkweed.
A monarch caterpillar feasts upon swamp milkweed leaves.
“Orange tic-tacs” (aphids) are parasites to this swamp milkweed.
A rewarding sight – 100% survival rate for all these native plants!
Dwarf Little Henry Sweetspire blossoms forming, but not yet open.
Half open sweetspire blossoms.
Sweetspire in full bloom, for a “white cheddar cheetos” effect!

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I read your column in the Gazette and thought I’d check out your blog. I now look forward to it and your wholesome lifestyle. Cuddos to you and God bless you. I’m 78 1/2 so there won’t be much changes in the way I live but I can tell my grandkids and great grandkids about the things I’m learning.

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