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Bee Wise...Plant Natives Well Attended

Posted: June 15, 2011

The evolution of the existing planters in Allegheny County Courthouse Courtyard began in 2009 when these four raised beds were retrofitted and converted into rain gardens.
Admiring the Courtyard Rain Garden

Admiring the Courtyard Rain Garden

Downspouts were diverted into the existing planters, and the beds were filled with new soil and drainage material. Drought tolerant native plants were then placed in the new rain gardens which are maintained by a dedicated group of Penn State Master Gardeners.

On Wednesday-June 8th, in celebration of the completed renovation, the courtyard was the site of “Bee Wise…Plant Natives”. A joint programming effort by Allegheny County, the Penn State Master Gardeners and Burgh Bees, and designed to show the value of bees as pollinators, the event attracted more than 250 visitors. During the two hour program, master gardeners provided information on the importance of using native plants in landscaping and how to incorporate environmentally-friendly practices in garden maintenance. Burgh Bees, which partners with Penn State Cooperative Extension, distributed samples of different varieties of honey while representatives helped participants learn to identify different native bees that visit area gardens. Visitors to the Courtyard program were also surprised with a delicious sample of ice cream, direct from the Berkey Creamery of Penn State.