Pollination Stations are Back and Better than Ever
What are Pollination Stations?
Pollination Station Planters are multi-purpose streetscape enhancements that provide pollinator-friendly plants through important public and private partnerships. To see our list of 2021 winners, click here! Each Station is an opportunity to give back to both the people and pollinators of our community through focused container gardening. Pollination Stations help us create:
- Streetscape beautification
- Community engagement
- More habitat and nutrition for local pollinators like butterflies, moths and bees featuring sun-loving, drought-tolerant plants
- Another step toward earning Butterfly Pavilion certification as a Pollinator District in addition to existing collaborations with the City of Manitou Springs and the local School District
What Plants Did We Use and Why?
Each Planter has the Same Five PlantsThe primary goal this year was to establish the plants and maintain their health in one of the hottest summers we’ve experienced yet. Our Manitou Pollinators team worked with the Butterfly Pavilion to identify a mix of perennial plants that would provide nutrition throughout the growing season and shelter for pollinators in the winter, plus create beauty for our streetscape year-round. We kept the plants the same in each planter to create consistency for pollinators The plants provide a mix of colors, textures, and are all drought-resistant and sun-loving and are generally deer resistant as well. We recommend these selections for both containers and and landscape gardens:
- Spartan Juniper (Juniperus chinensis)—As a centerpiece, the junipers are tough enough to withstand light deer browsing, gusty winds, and the weather extremes we experience in Southern Colorado’s urban mountain environments. A planting guide for shrubs explains some of the measures we took to prepare them for container life. We call them our little warriors.
- Turkish Veronica (Veronica liwanensis)—Groundcover with blue flowers in the spring to give pollinators an early source of food. Does well in rocky soils, high elevations. Full sun to part shade and easy care once established.
- Blanket Flower (Gaillardia aristata)—Bright perennial sun lover. Dead-head regularly to ensure reblooms, and save the seed heads for future plantings. Showy blooms without being demanding and great pollinator food in summer-early fall.
- Prairie Winecups (Callirhoe digitata)—Colorado native wildflower. Gorgeous color, frequently reblooms after deadheading and has a long season from late spring to fall. Water-wise flower great for perennial gardens with low maintenance needs.
- Firecracker Penstemon (Penstemon eatonii)—Western native plant with vivid scarlet-red flowers on tall bloom spikes in mid-spring. Dead-heading helps extend its lifespan, but leaving some seeds to ripen on the plant helps resow.
Who Are Our Volunteers?
Thank You Adoptive Gardeners! ♥️
- Armadillo Ranch and the Family of Armadillos
- Jenai Freng
- Indian Oaks Gals
- Christine Lowenberg
- Judith Chandler In Honor of Lucia Eagleheart and Roanin Caro
- Neale Minch
- Manitou Springs School District 14
- Keithley Pines Historic Cabins
- LolaBorealis Upcycled Glass Jewelry
- Holland and the Temple Bunch
- Emily Sawyer
- Manitou Springs Pollinators
- Angela Hartshorn and Jannine Scott
Planter Cleanout Volunteers
- Elizabeth Domangue
- Christina Baker
- Holland Temple
- Melody Daugherty
- Elizabeth Drolet
- Judith Chandler
- Barbara Winter
- Joan Stang
What Do Adoptive Gardeners Receive?
- Plants and hands-on training to plant the Pollination Sations
- Adoption recognition signs
- Supplemental guide to training session
- Watering equipment
- SMS text reminders
- Participation in year-end prizes and recognition
Why Are Pollinators Important?
- 90% of flowering plants in Colorado require pollinators for fruit and seed production
- Our nutritional needs are dependent on creatures like bees having their needs met. Local pollinators’ lifespans will be shortened or they’ll become extinct if their nutritional needs are not met with a biodiverse plant buffet
- Population declines have been observed for pollinator species in North America and around the world, but community efforts to create, protect, and restore new habitat and feeding corridors for pollinators provide more resilience and long-term sustainability
Thank You to Our Partners and Sponsors
- Manitou Pollinators
- Manitou Springs Urban Renewal Authority
- Manitou Springs Business Improvement District/Manitou Springs Chamber of Commerce
- Funded in part by Colorado Creative Industries and National Endowment for the Arts
- City of Manitou Springs
- EconoLodge Manitou Springs
- Rick’s Garden Center
- Lulu’s Downtstairs
- Theo’s Toys
- Adam’s Mountain Cafe
- J9 Glass