Q: Both birds and neighborhood children love the blackberry hedge on the edge of my yard, but I can’t stand the thought of the birds spreading Himalayan blackberry seeds all around the nearby natural areas.  Do you have suggestions for bird- attracting and child friendly native plants that I could replace this hedge with?

Q: Both birds and neighborhood children love the blackberry hedge on the edge of my yard, but I can’t stand the thought of the birds spreading Himalayan blackberry seeds all around the nearby natural areas.  Do you have suggestions for bird- attracting and child friendly native plants that I could replace this hedge with?

There certainly are a plethora of native plants that would fit your qualifications.  A diversified hedgerow planting would lengthen the season of interest and utility for birds, children, and you.  Consider mixing delicious thimbleberry (Rubus parviflorus) and black-capped raspberry (Rubus leucodermis), taller serviceberry (Amelanchier alnifolia), and evergreen salal (Gaultheria shallon).  Of more interest to birds than children are evergreen tall Oregon grape (Mahonia aquifolium) and deciduous red-flowering currant (Ribes sanguineum); for taller shrubs, use evergreen California wax myrtle (Myrica californica) or deciduous blue elderberry (Sambucus caerulea).  See http://wnps.org/landscaping/nurserylist.html for a list of suppliers of native plants and seeds in Washington.


Laura Matter, Natural Soil Building Program Manager at The Garden Hotline
The Garden Hotline can be reached at 206-633-0224, Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Questions can also be emailed to help@gardenhotline.org.
More information can be found at http://www.gardenhotline.org/

 

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