Several years ago, the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation began to restructure parts of the garden surrounding its offices in Bonn-Bad Godesberg. Most notably, parts of the Foundation’s front garden were turned into natural flowerbeds that were planted with carefully selected wild plants to create habitat in the middle of the city for butterflies, wild bees and other insects. This was motivated by the fact that caterpillars need lots of plants to eat, butterflies need flowers rich in nectar, and young wild bees need pollen from particular plants.
“We get a lot of positive feedback about the diverse flora in our flowerbeds“, said Enno Aufderheide, himself a biologist. “In addition, we consciously decided not to mow off the dead blossoms and stems because they serve as a winter domicile for chrysalises from which new butterflies emerge in the spring. We hope that this recognition by NABU will convince even those passers-by who find these parts of the garden to be less appealing in the autumn and winter months that this type of habitat is important for preserving biodiversity.”