|Nectaring on a late season ex-aster|
|Can you see the clubbed antenna?|
|Characteristic double V stationary pattern|
Pollination is incidental! Skippers are there for the nectar. While they're sipping nectar a few pollen grains will stick to their legs and be carried to the next flower on the plant-resulting in pollination! Lucky for those of us who like our plants to go to seed and spread their offspring around the garden. That’s one reason large swaths of flower make sense ~Pollination will be more successful then if you have a plant here and there. All pollinators need to find plenty of food in one area from a wide array of flowers that are in bloom during the spring, summer, and autumn.
|Horace Dusty Wing (?)|
|Male Skippers are often found perching in the sun|
I'm not too concerned about not being able to identify them. I do know, that I want them in my garden. They are important plant pollinators; they are part of the garden food chain, as consumers and food; and, because of their sensitivity to environmental toxins they are an important indicator species of ecosystem health. If you have an abundance of skippers and butterflies~you probably have a healthy garden habitat.
|characteristic clubbed antenna with hook|
|Nectaring on Caryopteris-See the proboscis, its long, flexible "tongue."|
My favorite plants for attracting pollinators to my Zone 7, Nearly neutral clay soil garden are: Asters/symphyotrichum, Penstemon, Monardas, Liatris, Veronicastrum, Agastache, Solidago, Vernonia, Eupatorium, Lobelia, Asclepias, Pycnanthemum, Ecinacea, Silphium, Tradescantia, Baptisia, Verbesina, Zinnias and Clover
Native grasses and sedges-little bluestem, descampsias, panicums, bottle grass, Carex platyphylla, Danthonia spicata (poverty grass)
Native shrubs- hydrangeas, iteas and hamamelis
Native trees-oak, locust, hickory, cercis, celtis, elm
|Epargyreus clarus -- Silver-spotted Skipper on False Dragonhead|
|Skipper enjoying Verbena bonariensis|
This post is part of a series on native pollinators in the garden~ Earlier posts and their links are listed below for your convenience.
Part I~Now Is The Time To Bee-gin Thinking About Bees ( here)
This Is The Place To Bee ( here)
If You Could Plant Only One Plant In Your Garden~Don't (here)
Must Bee The Season of The Witch (here)
Go Bare In Your Garden (here)
We can't All be pretty Pollinators (here)
Other bee posts you might want to read~
Count Yourself Lucky To Have Hoverflies (here)
Bumblebee Hotel (here)
Still Taking Care Of Bzzness (here)
My Sweet Embraceable You (here)
This post was written by Gail Eichelberger for my blog Clay and Limestone Copyright 2011.This work protected under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. Please contact me for permission to copy, reproduce, scrape, etc.