UConn Native Plants and Pollinators conference

The third biennial Native Plants and Pollinators conference will be held Friday,
November 5, 2021, beginning at 9 a.m., virtually via Zoom. 

Register at s.uconn.edu/NPPC2021Register!
Early Registration $30.00, by Thursday, September 30, 2021

$35.00, after September 30, 2021
Students, $15.00 with valid school ID

Join us for 4 hours of presentations featuring current science-based research and information
on supporting pollinators in managed landscapes. This program is designed for growers and
other green industry professionals, landscape service providers, landscape architects and
designers, town commissions, municipalities, schools, and homeowners. Learn how native
plants support pollinator health throughout the year!

Session topics: 

  • The Language of Flowers: An Introduction to Pollination Ecology 
    Rebecca McMackin, Director of Horticulture, Brooklyn Bridge Park 

The vast majority of plants rely on pollinators to reproduce. From bees, to butterflies, to birds
and bats, these pollinator partners shaped the evolution of flowers, giving us so much of the
beauty we appreciate today. However, these exciting dynamics, in which a flower’s pollen is
carried to a stigma, are fraught with trickery, bribery, thievery, and of course, salacious plant sex. This lecture will cover the basics of pollination ecology. Why do plants have flowers? How did they evolve? And specifically, what are flowers doing? Why are they so pretty and smell so good to us, non-pollinating primates? By the end of the presentation, you will be able to “read” flowers and come to know the true desires of the organisms you cultivate.

Rebecca McMackin is an ecologically obsessed horticulturist and garden designer. By day, she is the Director of Horticulture for Brooklyn Bridge Park, where she manages 85 acres of diverse parkland organically and with an eye towards habitat creation for birds, butterflies, and soil microorganisms. In her imaginary free time, Rebecca writes about landscape management and pollination ecology, as well as designs the occasional garden. Her writing has been published by the New York Times, the Ecological Landscape Alliance, and the Landscape Institute.

  • Pollinator Plants for Small Spaces and Containers 
    Mark Dwyer, Landscape Prescriptions by MD 

The challenges of limited gardening space shouldn’t preclude you from considering beautiful and effective pollinator-friendly plantings. Even small spaces in the garden and containers can feature effective plant combinations that will become an oasis for visiting pollinators. We’ll discuss a wide range of plants (emphasis on natives!) and design ideas that will feature potent pollinator plants for containers and the garden spaces of limited size.

Mark Dwyer owns and operates Landscape Prescriptions by MD, a landscape design and
consultation firm, in Janesville, WI. He also manages the Edgerton Hospital (WI) Healing
Garden which he designed over 10 years ago. Prior to these endeavors, Mark was Director of
Horticulture at Rotary Botanical Gardens (Janesville, WI) where he managed the maintenance and improvement of that 20-acre botanical garden with talented staff and dedicated volunteers. Mark’s true passion is obtaining, growing, observing and photographing all types of plants.

  •  Beyond the Traditional Butterfly Garden: Supporting Lepidoptera with Native Plants 
    Andrew Brand, Interim Director of Horticulture, Coastal Maine Botanical Garden  

The popularity of native plants has grown leaps and bounds recently and rightfully so. They’re
tough and durable, demonstrate good resistance to drought, insects, and disease, provide food
and habitat for wildlife, and they’re beautiful. Most landscapes today may be aesthetically
pleasing, but they typically do not support the diversity of Lepidoptera that is found in properties made up mostly of native species. Andy will present a selection of native plants describing their attributes, habitat needs and highlight the important roles they each play in supporting a wide variety of Lepidoptera in our yards. Hostplants, those species on which eggs are laid and caterpillars eat, will be emphasized.

For 27 years, Andy Brand was employed at Broken Arrow Nursery in Hamden, CT, where he
was the nursery manager. In March, 2018 Andy joined the staff at the Coastal Maine Botanical
Garden as Curator of Living Collections. His responsibilities include plant selection and
introducing new plants to the Garden’s collection and maintaining plant records and labels. In
March, 2021 he was made Interim Director of Horticulture. Andy is past President of the Connecticut Nursery and Landscape Association and is an avid naturalist. He is a cofounder and past President of the Connecticut Butterfly Association. He has put his interest in native plants to use as a volunteer for the New England Plant Conservation Program where he has helped monitor historical sites of endangered native plants. He has spoken to groups throughout the east on a range of topics including native plants, new and unusual ornamentals, butterfly gardening, and Maine butterflies and their life histories. Andy
also contributes articles to national magazines including Fine Gardening. Andy, along with his
wife, Michelle lives in Bristol, Maine. Checkout his Facebook page, Seeing Nature:
Observations from New England, a page dedicated to native flora and fauna.

  • Bees, Pesticides and Politics: Challenges and Opportunities for Sustainable Urban
    Landscapes, Daniel Potter, Ph.D., Professor, University of Kentucky 
    Pesticide Recertification Credits – 4 (PA and all supervisory categories)

This talk will help attendees better understand why bees and other pollinators are in peril, the
role of insecticides and other factors in pollinator decline, and how land care professionals and gardeners can safeguard pollinators when managing lawn and landscape pests. Pollinator
conservation initiatives that can be implemented by homeowners, garden centers, and land care professionals will be discussed, as well as best woody landscape plants for supporting bees and other pollinators.

Dr. Daniel Potter is Professor of Entomology at the University of Kentucky, where for 43 years
his research has informed strategies for sustainable management of pests and beneficial insects in urban landscapes nation-wide. Dan is an award-winning teacher and a frequent invited speaker at conferences around the world. He has received national leadership awards from the Entomological Society of America, Professional Land Care Network, American Nursery and Landscape Association, U.S. Golf Association, and other scientific and industry organizations.


TO PAY BY CHECK: download the registration form or email Alyssa.Siegel-Miles@uconn.edu
Questions about registration?

Contact: Alyssa Siegel-Miles, Alyssa.Siegel-Miles@uconn.edu

This program is brought to you by Victoria Wallace, Dept. of Extension, and Jessica Lubell, Dept. of PSLA.
We look forward to seeing you on November 5!