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LEAVES FOR WILDLIFE:

NURTURING NATURE, BALANCING ECOSYSTEMS

We're closed for 4th of July so our employees can enjoy the holiday. See you Saturday or next week!

What Sets Us Apart

Leaves for Wildlife specializes in trees, shrubs, grasses and flowers that are native to Ohio and the midwest. Located in Sunbury Ohio, our small, locally-owned nursery features dozens of uncommon and hard-to-find native plants, plus a friendly, helpful and knowledgeable team that is eager to help you create your own homegrown habitat and native plant landscape. 

Our pesticide-free plants may come with a delightful surprise for some fortunate shoppers – little stowaway caterpillars. These future butterflies and moths seldom cause any lasting harm, and their presence means the plants are already actively providing ecological services.

We reduce, reuse, recycle, and gratefully accept donated nursery pots, trays, milk crates, 5 gallon buckets and vinyl venetian blinds.

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From One Leaf to Another

Patty Shipley, our owner and founder, blossomed into Leaves for Wildlife through a lifelong passion for nature and gardening, coupled with her career as a natural healthcare provider. The roots of Leaves for Wildlife trace back to Patty's integrative wellness practice, Leaves of Life, which motivated her to actively engage in environmental improvement as a strategy for helping to prevent and reverse human illness. Patty holds a steadfast belief in the profound and intricate connection between human health and environmental well-being.

Why Planting Natives is Important

Conserving and restoring habitat is especially critical for native pollinators, local birds, and the more than 325 bird species that migrate through Ohio twice yearly along the Mississippi Flyway. Because urban sprawl and land development have fragmented natural habitats, scientists are sounding the alarm about the rapidly increasing rates of wildlife species extinctions. Each of us can help, by creating habitat in our yards, and/or as part of a volunteer effort in parks and other spaces.

 

Native pollinators - bees, flies, butterflies, bats, moths, beetles, birds and other animals - provide stability for every terrestrial ecosystem in the world, because wild plants depend on them to reproduce. Most of the world's wildlife — and more than 250,000 wild flowering plants — need native pollinators to exist. Humans also rely on these important insects since about 1/3 of the food we eat depends on pollination.

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When growers tinker with plants to change the shape of flowers (think double blooms), this often lowers or completely negates pollen and nectar production. Additionally, some pollinators have adapted their mouthparts to fit particular flowers, so changing the flower's shape means they can no longer access whatever pollen and nectar may still be present. Similarly, plants with altered leaf color, such as the red leafed redbud cultivar and the many-colored cultivars of ninebark, contain plant compounds that were not originally there, which means native butterfly and moth caterpillars can no longer use them for food.  These are important points when considering cultivars of native plants, sometimes referred to as "nativars."

Lastly, indigenous plants are perfectly adapted to the soils, moisture levels, and weather patterns in our region. They thrive without soil amendments or special attention. Moreover, these native plants actively participate in regulating rainwater runoff and nurturing a robust soil food web. This, in turn, prevents soil compaction and fosters increased diversity within the ecosystems they call home. Opting for native plants and establishing habitat in our surroundings becomes a meaningful contribution to safeguarding crucial ecosystems and the diverse life forms they support.

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METALLIC SWEAT BEE

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AMERICAN LADY BUTTERFLY

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EASTERN BUMBLEBEE

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