Today's pollinator plant is a native shrub to Eastern U.S. and Canada habitat, the American Bladdernut (Staphylea trifolia).
This shrub blooms in early Spring; it usually blooms here in Kentucky around mid-March. The flowers are perfect for feeding native bees just getting out of winter hibernation.
The shrub is an understory tree and can grow in partial shade, reaching a height of 11-12'.
When it comes to landscaping, please consider the effects of planting non-native shrubs like Heavenly Bamboo "Nandina" species and English Ivy. The berries from these fruits are not as nutritious and could even harm birds if eaten in large quantities.
Native trees will help feed the 250 bird species that call Kentucky home during the spring and fall migrations.
Thanks to Margaret C. from Wild Ones Louisville for the information!
** PLEASE REMEMBER THAT LEADED GASOLINE WAS ONLY BANNED IN THE 1980s/EARLY 90s. IF YOU LIVE IN DOWNTOWN LOUISVILLE (ESPECIALLY ON ONE-WAYS) YOU WILL HAVE LEAD IN YOUR SOIL. DO NOT EAT ANY PLANT THAT IS NOT IN A RAISED BED OR POT. **
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