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Volunteer Evelyn Sherr

Meet our new Habitat Haven volunteer. Evelyn Sherr has joined Lane Audubon’s Habitat Haven Backyard Certification team and is excited to be doing site visits for our new participants who want to have their yards certified. Welcome Ev!!

When did you become interested in native plants, birds, and pollinators?

I’ve been a longtime birdwatcher and have enjoyed photographing Oregon birds and wildflowers. A more recent fascination with butterflies was my gateway to growing native plants. After moving from Central Oregon in 2021, I started altering my yard,  adding native shrubs and perennials that are nectar sources and host plants for butterflies and moths. I was spurred on by Douglas Tallamy’s Homegrown National Park project, which advocates growing locally native trees, shrubs, and wildflowers to benefit the entire natural food web. The Oregon Bee Project and the Xerces Society also made me aware of the importance of specific plants and nesting habitat for native bees and other pollinators.

How has that interest played out in your life?

I love learning about the insects—butterflies, moths, bees, flies, and other bugs—that visit my yard. I log my photos on iNaturalist to add data for research. Watching my garden change for the better as native plants bloom and fruits mature is a constant pleasure.

What made you want to get involved in Lane Audubon’s Habitat Haven Backyard Certification program?

I knew about the Bird Alliance of Oregon’s Backyard Habitat program. I am excited to participate in a similar program here.

What are you getting out of being a volunteer?

I am continuing to learn about gardening with native plants and am enjoying helping others transform their yards into wildlife havens.

Anything else you want to add, such as where you grew up, childhood interests, etc…?

I grew up in Florida in the 1950s when much of the state was still fairly wild. In the 1970s and 80s I lived on a mostly pristine island off the Georgia coast with abundant birds (including Wood Storks and Painted Buntings!) and other wildlife. These experiences deepened my interest in the flora and fauna of natural habitats. When my family moved to Oregon in 1990, there were entirely new landscapes to explore. My maternal grandmother was a master gardener and loved birds, so I likely got my enthusiasm for plants and nature from her.

Thank you, Ev!!

Yellow Violet, Viola glabellaNote: As interest in Habitat Haven grows, we can use more help from those of you who know native plants! Please send in a Volunteer Interest Form and we will contact you. You can make a difference for birds and pollinators in our community!

by Barbara Bryson
photos by Evelyn Sherr