My Favorite Places: Inniswood Prairie Garden

COLLEEN SHARKEY, Environmental Educator, Inniswood Metro Gardens

Ashy sunflower in the Prairie Garden at Inniswood. (Colleen Sharkey)

Bumblebees buzzing, crickets chirping and goldfinches exploding from wildflower plantings always brighten my day as I wander through the Prairie Garden at Inniswood Metro Gardens.

Fall wildflowers are gorgeous right now and my favorite way to enjoy them is to walk among them, with the sunflowers and grasses towering above me. The mowed pathway through the Prairie Garden allows you to be face-to-face with gorgeous blooms, and all the interesting wildlife that make their living on flowers.

Have you ever watched a bee muscle its way into bottle gentian or turtle head bloom? It’s an amazing spectacle and I marvel every time at how perfectly the bumblebees fit inside. Ruby throated hummingbirds are visiting the garden to nectar on the spotted jewelweed and if you’re lucky to see one already pollinated, make sure to touch the seed pod to experience why jewelweed is also called “touch-me-not.” I also love the opportunity the Prairie Garden offers to visitors who might be thinking of adding more native wildflowers to their own gardens. The Inniswood volunteers work diligently to label the flowers with signs so that you can see what they’ll look like when full grown in a naturalized flower bed. There are so many formal gardens to see at Inniswood, make sure you don’t miss out on the Prairie Garden this fall!

OHIO FALL COLOR FORECAST (see weekly updates on Ohio Dept of Natural Resources website)