Tuesday, February 27, 2024
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Go Native—Grow Native: Seaside Goldenrod

Buckeye Butterflies pollinate coastal goldenrod flowers. Photo by Betsy Washington

Solidago sempervirens, Seaside Goldenrod

The more than 35 species of goldenrods in Virginia provide a spectacular fall show along our roadsides, fields and coast. Without question they are a most important fall nectar source for native bees and butterflies. In fact, goldenrods are hosts for over 114 species of the butterflies and moths that make up the main diet of baby songbirds.

They also provide seeds for adult songbirds and small mammals. Goldenrods are pollinated by insects and do not cause allergies, but have been given a bad rap by the actual culprit, the widespread annual common ragweed, with its insignificant tiny greenish flowers and minute windblown pollen. Wildflower and public garden guru William Cullina, former head of Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens, has written that no garden is complete without goldenrods.

Of the many garden-worthy goldenrods, our beautiful local seaside goldenrod…

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