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Butterfly and Pollinator Garden

A Safe Haven for our Garden

Since 2004, a Butterfly and Pollinator Garden not only added beauty to the grounds of the Museum, it also sustained butterflies, bees and other pollinators with a variety of native plants.However, the garden was in the path of construction for the new U-M Biological Science Building (BSB) — the future home of the Museum. In the spring of 2017, our master gardener, Mary Duff-Silverman, Museum staff and volunteers, and a U-M Grounds crew “deconstructed the garden” and hauled three truckloads of plants over to Washtenaw County’s County Farm Park where they were planted in a beautiful plot near Project Grow’s community gardens. The plants will be returned to the Museum when the new BSB garden space is ready.

Over 55 herbaceous perennials were relocated, including: Burk Juniper, Spicebush, New Jersey Tea, Switch Grass, Joe Pye Weed, Isanti Dogwood, Aster, Coreopsis, Goldenrod, Blazing Star, Butterfly Weed, Coneflower, and Black Eyed Susan. In addition, nine grasses, sedges, and rushes are planted, including Big Bluestem, Purple Love Grass, and Heavy Metal Switch Grass.

Mary Duff-Silverman is always happy to welcome more volunteers. For more information, email Mary at


About Pollinator Gardens

A pollinator garden consists of plants and flowers that provide nectar or pollen for a wide range of pollinators  such as most bees and some birds, bats, and other insects. Pollinators, play a crucial role in flowering plant reproduction and in the production of most approximately 75% of all fruits and vegetables.

Many pollinator populations are in decline which is attributed most severely to a loss in feeding and nesting habitats. Pollution, the misuse of chemicals, disease, and changes in climatic patterns are all contributing to shrinking and shifting pollinator populations.