The McKeon Farm Meadow Restoration and Pollinator Population Study Project & Toolkit
Beginning in 2020, NRWA teamed up with the Ridgefield Conservation Commission to work in close collaboration with landscape designer Evan Abramson, Principal of Landscape Interactions, to transform McKeon Farm in Ridgefield into a regional biodiversity hotspot for pollinator species. Abramson, Pollinator Systems Designer, worked with Ridgefield Conservation Commissioner and NRWA board member, Kitsey Snow, to design and install two pollinator meadows–an upland area and a wet meadow–created specifically to benefit rare and specialist pollintors from our region. These are the bees and butterflies that require certain plants to survive, plants that have in many cases become more and more rare in our landscape. Baseline pollinator populations were counted by entomologists at Landscape Interactions before planting and counts will continue for two years after, in order to track any hoped for increases in pollinator diversity and population sizes.
Gardeners, farmers, landscape designers, conservation organizations, and local governments all play a vital role in strengthening, expanding and enhancing regional biodiversity, ecological health, and climate change resilience. On conservation properties, residential landscapes, farms, roadsides, schools, and solar projects, functionally diverse native pollinator habitats can serve as building blocks for linking intact natural areas across a fragmented landscape.
But what to plant, when to mow, where to focus first and how to measure the results? Abramson of Landscape Interactions created a design, mowing plan, and overall strategy for McKeon farm that is now available here for everyone in our watershed to use.
We thank the Anne S. Richardson Fund for supporting this project.