Finding plants for pollinators in springtime can be a bit frustrating. While there are lots of trees and shrubs, not to mention natives, blooming around you, it can be difficult to discover exactly which plant is best suited for your own pollinator paradise. And spring blooming flowers for the garden can be difficult to come by.
When we talk about pollinator plants, I like to include plants that do double-duty: plants that have blooms that are nectar rich and that are hosts for either moths or butterflies. Native plants and nativars fill these categories the best.
Plants that are considered spring blooming are ones which bloom in April and May, before the summer sun comes pouring in. Good garden natives for pollinators in spring include Purple Milkweed (Asclepias purpurascens), Spider Milkweed (Asclepias viridis), Black Sampson (Echinacea angustifolia), Fremont’s Leatherflower (Clematis fremontii), Spiderworts (Tradescantia species), Rose Verbena (Glandularia canadensis), Wild Ginger (Asarum canadense), New Jersey Tea (Ceanothus americanus), Showy Penstemon (Penstemon cobaea), Purple Poppymallow (Callirhoe involucrata), and Field Pussytoes (Antennaria neglecta).
These plants and many more can be found at your favorite garden centers and mail-order nurseries.