Program gives participants native Saskatchewan wildflower seeds
Calling all green thumbs! This spring, the Saskatchewan Wildlife Federation will once again present its Backyard Biodiversity Challenge, designed to get people outdoors. Through the program, participants receive native Saskatchewan wildflower seeds to plant in their backyards and other places where the flowers will thrive.
While the initiative began as way to encourage people to spend time in nature during the pandemic lockdowns, it has now become a regular part of SWF programming, says the federation’s education director, Doug Gibson. Complete with an educational component, the program also benefits the province’s prairie ecosystem. Last year, the SWF mailed out 300 seed packs.
Along with the seeds, participants receive an information package explaining how to germinate and plant the seeds, and how to identify and care for the resulting wildflowers, which include bergamot, black-eyed Susans, giant hyssop, prairie coneflowers, purple prairie clover, smooth asters, stiff goldenrod and yellow evening primrose.
“Beautiful native wildflowers are not only tough and perfectly adapted to life on the prairies, they are also a haven for bees and other pollinators that play an important role in our prairie ecosystem,” reads the program description on the SWF website.
Gibson says the federation also encourages participants to monitor the flowers’ growth and watch for pollinators, an exercise that can easily double as a great project for science classrooms. Interested individuals and schools can enrol in the free program at the end of March via a form on the SWF website.
Learn more about the SWF’s programs and positions at www.swf.sk.ca.