The Westport Garden Club presents entomologist Doug Tallamy via Zoom, who will speak about how what humans plant affect the ecosystem in profound ways. Recent headlines about global insect declines and 3 billion fewer birds in North America are a bleak reality check about how ineffective our current landscape designs have been at sustaining the plants and animals that sustain us.
To create landscapes that enhance local ecosystems rather than degrade them, we must 1) remove the invasives on our property and 2) add the native plant communities that sustain food webs, sequester carbon, maintain diverse native bee communities, and manage our watersheds. If we do this in half of the area now in lawn, we can create Homegrown National Park, a 20 million acre network of viable habitats that will provide vital corridors connecting the few natural areas that remain. This approach to conservation empowers everyone to play a significant role in the future of the natural world.
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Doug Tallamy is the T. A. Baker Professor of Agriculture in the Department of Entomology and Wildlife Ecology at the University of Delaware, where he has authored 106 research publications and has taught insect-related courses for 41 years. Chief among his research goals is to better understand the many ways insects interact with plants and how such interactions determine the diversity of animal communities. His books include Bringing Nature Home, The Living Landscape, co-authored with Rick Darke, Nature's Best Hope, a New York Times Best Seller, The Nature of Oaks, winner of the American Horticultural Society’s 2022 book award.
In 2021, he cofounded Homegrown National Park with Michelle Alfandari. His awards include recognition from The Garden Writer’s Association, Audubon, The National Wildlife Federation, Allegheny College, The Garden Club of America, and The American Horticultural Association.