Adrienne Stalek, a summer intern working with Maggie Lidz, writes:
I noticed Prunus serotina (Black Cherry) saplings newly planted in multiple locations at Winterthur. This struck me as especially wonderful because Prunus serotina is not easy to find in the commercial nursery market and is wonderfully beneficial for wildlife.
To quote Douglas W. Tallamy from his 2007 book Bringing Nature Home: How You Can Sustain Wildlife with Native Plants:
“Native wild cherries, including black cherry (Prunus serotina), chokecherry (P. virginiana) and pin cherry (P. pensylvanica), are excellent sources of food for both vertebrate and invertebrate wildlife. The genus Prunus ranks third in the number of Lepidoptera it supports on its foliage. In the East, these include 10 species of giant silk moths, such as cecropia moth, polyphemus moth, imperial moth, and io moth; 5 species of butterflies, such as the tiger swallowtail and red-spotted purple; 63 species of inchworms (Geometridae); and 18 species of dagger moths in the genus Acronicta. Cherry trees also are copious berry producers whose fruits help sustain birds for weeks in late summer.”