Native Garden Tours, Native Solutions webinar, and another Seed event

Above: OSPC will offer tours of two of its Native Gardens supporting pollinators. (image of Library garden cropped from Conservations Native Solutions Webinar video)

A week from Saturday, the Open Space Preservation Commission will be showing off its Native Pollinator Gardens at two special events. As long as I’m sharing that news, I also have other news that may be of interest to readers who care about gardening and/or native solutions.

Back in April, OSPC planned to hold a tour of its pollinator-friendly garden at the Southborough Library as part of Planet Palooza. That had to be postponed. It’s now been rescheduled for a week from Saturday. As a bonus, there’s a Tour of the Native Garden at Beals immediately following the first tour.

This Saturday, the Library is holding a different gardening related event on their lawn – Summer Seed Exchange. That one isn’t part of the OSPC’s native initiative:

Seed Library flyerStop by the Southborough Library outside to pick up a Gardening Kit and a tomato plant seedling (while supplies last). . .

Take-home crafts are available for kids while supplies last! Event takes place on the Southborough Library Front Lawn.

Each kit contains seed packets in one of three themes: Grow Your Own Salad, Gorge on Gourds and Grow Your Own Herb Garden.

The event is June 18th from 11:00 am to 1:00 pm.

As for OSPC’s Native Garden Tours those are on Saturday, June 25th rain date of Sunday:

Library Native Garden - cropped from Conservation webinarJoin the Southborough Open Space Preservation Commission (OSPC) as we showcase two Pollinator Preservation Gardens in town. The OSPC has been working with Dr. Robert J. Gegear since 2015 when he chose Breakneck Hill Conservation Land as his first research site for the Beecology Project. Join OSPC Chair Freddie Gillespie as she guides you through the two gardens, which she designed utilizing her years of knowledge from collaboration with Dr Gegear. Both gardens were installed by hard working local volunteers. Of interest to anyone interested in pretty flower gardens and/or in protecting biodiversity through pollination. If you attended the Southborough tour last year at the Beecology Research Garden, this is the next step in creating thoughtful designed Public Display Gardens.

The Library’s garden is near the parking lot. That tour is from 10:00 to 11:00 am. OSPC promotes

In partnership with the Southborough Library, in August of 2021 the OPSC planted a formal native garden showcasing how we can preserve biodiversity through pollination. The approximately 1,000 sq ft of gardens includes a unique stormwater feature and an adjacent lawn alternative planting. The garden has been planted with over 560 plants of 36 species from Dr. Gegear’s plant list for at-risk pollinators. This garden is Phase I of a larger plan and revitalizes an underutilized portion of the library grounds

For more on last year’s planting of the garden, click here.

From the Library, at around 11:00 am, the group will head to the Beals Preserve garden tour at 114 Main Street:

*some may wish to carpool due to limited parking area

This new garden is located in the front meadow of the Southborough Open Land Foundation’s 58-acre Beals Preserve. The garden talk will showcase the planting methods for soil prep and garden installation in an old agriculture field. Initial planting for a portion of the 540 sq ft garden area will be done in early June with over 290 plants of 30 species from Dr. Robert Gegear’s list for at-risk pollinators. Additional plants will be added over the summer and in the fall and next spring many grown from the OSPC Winter Sow Project. 

After the tour, the public is welcomed to check out this year’s Art on the Trails exhibit at Beals. You can read more about that here.

In preparation for the garden tours, volunteers will be at work at Beals garden this weekend. They’ll be preparing soil at 9:00 am this Saturday and planting on Sunday at noon. If you’d like to pitch in, email

I learned about those volunteer details through another event you might be interested in. This one took place yesterday*, but is still available, thanks to YouTube. The webinar was titled Nature Based Solutions in Southborough:

Nature Based Solutions flyerJoin the Southborough Conservation Commission, funded through the Municipal Vulnerability Preparedness Program (MVP) as they host a webinar about Nature Based Solutions in Southborough.

Now is your chance to understand what nature based solutions are, why they are used, what you can do as a business owner, what you can do as a homeowner, and local examples from around Southborough!

So what are they solutions to? It appears to mean solutions to the impacts that installing impervious surfaces has in context of Climate Change. It’s part of their effort to identify hazards and improve the Town’s resilience to Climate Change.

Surfaces “impervious” to allowing water to seep into the ground include driveways, parking lots, compacted gravel and swimming pools. According to the webinar, the increase of those surfaces decreases water quality and ecological health, increased temperatures locally and in “adjacent waterbodies”, and localized flooding.

The webinar was conducted by Conservation Agent Melissa Danza. It includes solutions like installing native plants, diverting downspouts to pervious areas, and planting rain gardens. You can watch that here

*(Sorry, I didn’t see news of the Native Solutions webinar until last night.)

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