Mariton: Bergamot and Butterflies
by Tim Burris, Preserve Manager. Photos by Carole Mebus, Volunteer.
The Wild Bergamot (Monarda fistulosa) has been blooming in Mariton’s meadows for a few weeks, but I am just getting around to write about it. Carole Mebus visited to take some photos of butterflies when it first started blooming. The patches of bergamot in the meadows are really beautiful and attract a lot of pollinators. Small Wood Sunflower (Helianthus microcephalus) is also blooming now and adds a bit of color. The different goldenrods are just starting to bud and soon will also be painting the meadows with yellow.
The bergamot brings out the Hummingbird Moths. Every year I look forward to seeing these interesting insects show up. The other day while mowing trails it seemed like there were several Hummingbird Moths at each little patch of bergamot that I passed.