Tips

Guidelines for the Plant for Pollinators Registry 

When you add a pollinator garden to the registry, its features will be included in the Plant for Pollinators program database. This database tracks the number of gardens, number and species of native plants, and number and species of milkweed. All personal information is kept strictly private.

The steps taken to qualify your garden as a Plant for Pollinators garden have a direct impact on monarchs and all pollinators—your contribution is applauded!

To be recognized as a Plant for Pollinators garden, your garden needs to fulfill certain requirements. The requirements may differ depending on the garden’s location, but generally, they are:

  • Your garden has a minimum of certain native plants;
  • It provides water and shelter; and
  • It’s maintained with sustainable gardening practices.

The specific requirements are listed below.

If you or a group would like to propose adding a pollinator garden to a school, facility, business, or property other than a home landscape, the guidelines are the same as for a single-family home. However, as a first step, the feasibility of the project should be discussed with the property owner.

Native Trees

If you live in a single-family home:  You pledge to have at least one each of four different native tree species on your property.

If you live in a townhouse: You pledge to have at least one each of two different native tree species on your property.

If you live in an apartment or condominium: There are no tree requirements.

  • Black Gum or Black Tupelo, Nyssa sylvatica
  • Cherry Laurel, Prunus laurocerasus
  • Drummond Red Maple, Acer rubrum
  • Fringe Tree, Chionanthus virginicus
  • Loblolly Pine, Pinus taeda
  • Mexican Plum, Prunus mexicana
  • Oak (over 40 native species), Quercus spp.
  • Parsley Hawthorn, Crataegus marshallii
  • Pawpaw, Asimina triloba
  • Persimmon, Diospyros texana 
  • Possumhaw, Ilex decidua
  • Redbud, Cercis canadensis
  • River Birch, Betula nigra
  • Wax Myrtle, Myrica cerifera
  • Yaupon Holly, Ilex vomitoria


Native or Naturalized Shrubs 

If you live in a single-family home:  You pledge to have at least one each of four different native or naturalized shrub species on your property.

If you live in a townhouse: You pledge to have at least one each of two different native or naturalized shrub species on your property.

If you live in an apartment or condominium: There are no shrub requirements.

  • American Beautyberry, Callicarpa americana
  • Arrowwood Viburnum, Viburnum dentatum
  • Barbados Cherry, Lonicera albiflora
  • Butterfly Bush, Buddleia
  • Buttonbush, Cephalanthus occidentalis
  • Flame Acanthus, Anisacanthus quadrifidus
  • Oakleaf Hydrangea, Hydrangea quercifolia
  • Rough Leaf Dogwood, Cornus drummondii
  • Rusty Blackhaw, Viburnum rufidulum
  • Spicebush, Lindera benzoin
  • Strawberry Bush, Euonymus americanus
  • Turk’s Cap, Malvariscus arboreus v. Drummondii
  • Virginia Sweetspire, Itea virginica

Native and Naturalized Perennials
A pollinator garden should bloom spring through fall.

If you live in a single-family home or townhouse:  You pledge to have at least two different species that bloom in each of the three seasons, and a minimum of 18 total plants.

If you live in an apartment or condominium: You pledge to have at least two different species that bloom in each of the three seasons, for a minimum of 6 total plants.

Spring-Blooming (2 species minimum)

  • Annual Phlox, Phlox drummondii
  • Basket Flower, Centaurea americana
  • Bee Balm, Monarda spp.
  • Fragrant Phlox, Phlox pilosa
  • Salvia, Savlia spp.
  • Sweet William, Phlox divaricate
  • Verbena, Verbena spp.
  • Yarrow, Achillea millefolium

Summer-Blooming  (2 species minimum)

  • Black-eyed Susan, Rudbeckia hirta
  • Blazing Star or Gayfeather, Liatris spp.
  • Cardinal Flower, Lobelia cardinalis
  • Indian Blanket, Gaillardia pulchella
  • Indigo Spires, Salvia “Indigo Spires”
  • Lanceleaf Coreopsis, Coreopsis lanceolata
  • Lantana, Lantana spp.
  • Porterweed, Stachytarpheta
  • Purple Coneflower, Echinacea purpurea
  • Scarlet Sage, Salvia coccinea
  • Zexmenia, Wedelia hispida

 

Fall-Blooming  (2 species minimum)

  • Autumn Sage, Savlia greggii
  • Blue Mistflower, Conoclinium coelestinum
  • Blue Wood Aster, Symphyotrichum cordifolium
  • Goldenrod, Solidago altissima
  • Mealycup Sage, Salvia farinacea
  • Maximilian Sunflower, Helianthus maximiliana

 

Host Plants
If you live in a single-family home or townhouse: 
You pledge to have at least four different species of host plants to include at least two species of milkweed, and a minimum of 12 total milkweed plants.

If you live in an apartment or condominium: You pledge to have at least two different species of milkweed, and a minimum of 6 total milkweed plants.

Plant                                                                                                     Butterfly species

Aquatic Milkweed, Asclepias perennis                                     Monarch and Queen

Aster                                                                                         Pearl Crescent and Silvery Checkerspot

Butterfly Weed, Asclepias tuberosa                                         Monarch and Queen

Citrus                                                                                        Giant Swallowtail

Dill or Fennel                                                                            Eastern Black Swallowtail

Dutchman’s Pipe, Aristolochia macrophylla                             Pipevine Swallowtail

Green Milkweed, Asclepias viridis                                             Monarch and Queen

Pawpaw, Asimina triloba                                                            Zebra Swallowtail

Purple Passionflower, Passiflora incarnata                                Gulf Fritillary

Snapdragons (cool-weather annual)                                        Common Buckeye

Spicebush, Lindera benzoin                                                     Spicebush Swallowtail

Swamp Milkweed, Asclepias incarnate                                    Monarch and Queen

Variegated Duchman’s Pipe, Aristochia fimbriata                     Pipevine Swallowtail

Yarrow, Achillea millefolium                                                        American Painted Lady

 Water Source
Your landscape must have at least one water source, such as:

  • Birdbath
  • Butterfly puddling areas
  • Pond

If you live in an apartment or condominium: There is no water source requirement.

Shelter
Your landscape must have at least one type of shelter, such as:

  • Brush pile
  • Shrub thicket
  • Fallen leaves and pine needles left on ground until spring clean-up
  • Man-made native bee box

If you live in an apartment or condominium: There is no shelter requirement.

Sustainable Gardening Methods 

You must safeguard your pollinator garden by using Integrated Pest Management (IPM) practices and minimizing invasive plants.

 

You pledge to avoid purchasing and planting these invasive species:        

 
  • Asian Bamboo
  • Asian Jasmine
  • Ligustrum
  • Chinese Tallow
  • Chinaberry
  • Chinese Wisteria
  • Elephant Ear
  • Mimosa
  • Nandina
  • Chinese Privet
  • Japanese Honeysuckle
  • Chinese Pistache
 

You pledge to use no pesticides. Or to use pesticides only occasionally and when you do, you:

 
  • Identify the pest before taking action;
  • Use less toxic treatments such as horticultural oil or insecticidal soap;
  • Always follow label directions;
  • Never spray plants in bloom; and
  • Only target-spray the problem spots.
 

 Home Composting

While not a requirement for the registry, composting organic waste from your home and yard is highly recommended. By doing so, you reduce the amount of waste destined for landfills and are rewarded with rich compost to add to your landscape. Your soil and plants will thank you. You can learn more about composting at a Composting Class offered by Environmental Services throughout the year. You can see if there is a scheduled class on the Township website at: [Link to calendar page or Environmental Services page.]