Saint Peter’s Receives Grant for Native Plant Garden

Saint Peter’s University has been awarded $1,000 from the Society for Biodiversity Preservation (SBP) to create a “Native Plant Garden for Birds and Pollinators.” The garden is currently under development along Gannon Hall. The goal of the project is to restore natural habitat and promote biodiversity. Plans include planting native species such as wildflowers that will support bees and butterflies. Milkweed will be planted as a food source for Monarch butterflies and shrubs such as blueberry, elderberry and viburnum will be added to produce food and shelter for birds. Wild ginger, purple coneflower, New England aster, cardinal flower and wild columbine are examples of perennials planned for the garden. The SBP grant includes funds for expanding feeding stations used for Project FeederWatch (PFW), a winter survey of birds, which will soon be in its 5th season on campus. In addition, several students involved in PFW have been assisting in the hard work of removing foreign and invasive plants from the site to make way for native species. Pictured above is Kathy Wydner, Ph.D., associate professor of biology and director of the grant.