On April 26, 2014, the Bucknell University Arboretum hosted its first Earth Day celebration. Approximately 25 student and community participants learned about native plants, insects, amphibians, water quality and aquatic invertebrates with demonstrations by the lab groups of biology professors Elizabeth Evans, Steve Jordan, Matthew McTammany, Mark Spiro, Emily Stowe and Mizuki Takahashi.

Participants took a first step in restoring a native riparian plant community to the banks of Miller Run between the Art Building and Bucknell Hall by planting more than 400 herbaceous perennials, shrubs and trees.  These plants were chosen to encourage populations of native insects and birds as well as to stabilize the banks of Miller Run and filter out nutrients and other pollutants from entering the waterway.

Riparian plant species list:

  • Acer negundo (Boxelder) Aceraceae (Maple Family)
    Dioecious, deciduous tree.
    Is a host for larvae of Cecropia silkmoth.  Seeds eaten by birds.
  • Asclepias incarnata (Swamp milkweed) Asclepiadaceae (Milkweed Family)
    Herbaceous perennial.
    Important food source for Monarch Butterfly. Attracts hummingbirds.
  • Cornus racemosa  (Gray dogwood)Cornaceae (Dogwood Family)
    Deciduous shrub.
    Fruit eaten by Northern Cardinal, Downy Woodpecker, Northern Flicker, and Eastern Bluebird. Flowers attract butterflies.
  • Eupatorium perfoliatum (Boneset) Asteraceae (Aster Family)
    Herbaceous perennial.
    Attracts birds and butterflies. Beneficial to native bees.
  • Eutrochium purpureum. (Sweet scented joe pye weed)
    Asteraceae (Aster Family)
    Herbaceous perennial.
    Important source of honey, attracts bees
  • Lindera benzoin  (Spicebush) Lauraceaee (Laurel Family)
    Deciduous shrub.
    Attracts birds and butterflies. Larval host for Eastern Tiger Swallowtail and Spicebush Swallowtail.
  • Lobelia spicata (Palespike lobelia) Campanulaceae (Bellflower Family)
    Herbaceous perennial.
    Attracts hummingbirds.
  • Quercus phellos  (Willow oak) Fagaceae (Beech Family)
    Deciduous tree.
    Wildlife eat acorns. Offers nesting sites and cover for birds. Larval host for White M Hairstreak and Horace’s Duskywing.
  • Salix discolor  (Pussy willow)  Salicaceae (Willow Family)
    Dioecioius, deciduous shrub.
    Early season food for songbirds, waterfowl, and small mammals. Larval host for Mourning Cloak and Viceroy butterflies.
  • Solidago rugosa  (Wrinkleleaf goldenrod)  Asteraceae (Aster Family)
    Important for native bees and honey bees.
  • Vernonia noveboracensis (New York Iron weed) Asteraceae (Aster Family)
    Herbaceous perennial.
    Attracts birds, butterflies, and native bees
  • Viburnum dentatum  (Southern arrowwood) Caprifoliaceae (Honeysuckle Family)
    Deciduous shrub.
    Provides food for gamebirds, songbirds, and small mammals. Attracts Eastern Bluebird, Northern Flicker, Gray Catbird, American Robin, and Spring Azure butterfly. Beneficial to bees.