Pollinator conservation has become a high priority in recent years due to documented declines in many of our native pollinators, including bees, moths, and the iconic monarch butterfly. These plantings were partially funded by grants from U.S. Fish and Wildlife and the Indiana Department of Natural Resources with money dedicated to pollinator conservation.
Establishment of these plots begin with site preparation in 2016. Eco Logic treated the lawn and old field vegetation several times during the growing season to ensure a clean site free of perennial competition.
In the winter of 2016-2017, a diverse pollinator seed mix containing 7 species of graminoids and 31 species of wildflowers was installed by Eco Logic utilizing a no-till prairie seed drill across 6 different plots at Eagle Creek Park totaling 14 acres. Three of the plots were on highly visible sites close to the roads and the Nature Center on the east side of the park while the other three are on the west side of the reservoir in somewhat less visible locations. By 2020, all but one of the species in the seed mixes had been confirmed in at least one of the plantings while the majority of the species had recruited in all six plantings.
The plantings have become a very showy and popular feature of the park, attracting visitors and photographers, as well as the intended pollinators. The seeds of the wildflower have become an important source of food for birds in the fall and winter. Eco Logic continues to maintain these plantings, surveying them each year for invasive species and utilizing very targeted control measures to eliminate the invasive species while maintaining the wildflower diversity.