YOUR GARDEN


Unexpected Ways to Support Pollinators

(NAPSI)—It's a common misconception that you need a large yard and advanced gardening skills to support honey bees by planting more forage. However, the reality is that anyone with enthusiasm and a potted plant can provide bees with the food and habitat they need. While individuals are crucial in protecting pollinators, many organizations are also finding solutions to help pollinators thrive in unexpected places.

Urban Gardens

One such organization is the University of the District of Columbia (UDC). After receiving funding from the D.C. Department of Energy and Environment to create a “green roof,” the university’s College of Agriculture, Urban Sustainability and Environmental Sciences (CAUSES) went a step further by restoring an existing greenhouse to form what would eventually become the largest food-producing green roof in the city. The D.C. Master Gardeners worked with UDC to add a garden to the roof that supports pollinators and serves as a beacon of education and outreach for those interested in urban gardening and habitat restoration.

Golf Courses

Golf courses around the nation are also doing their part to plant more forage for honey bees. Since 2010, Cantigny Golf in Wheaton, Illinois, has been restoring several acres of native prairie land, providing vital habitat for honey bees and other pollinators. Club superintendent Scott Witte started The Bee Barometer Project to illustrate how golf can be part of the solution to sustaining pollinator health. Witte now serves as an important link between golf courses and organizations raising awareness about bee health.

On Long Island, Bethpage State Park is also creating pollinator-attractant areas throughout its vast recreational space. The park has restored nearly two acres of pollinator habitat and planted scores of wildflowers, and it's not stopping there. Agronomy director Andrew Wilson and his staff plan to create an entire corridor for pollinators by removing invasive species and restoring the areas' native habitats.

Many of these organizations have joined Feed a Bee, a nationwide initiative sponsored by Bayer to support pollinator health. Feed a Bee's current goal is to plant pollinator forage in all 50 states by the end of 2018. By partnering with organizations that provide habitat in unexpected places, the initiative's message that anyone can support bees and other pollinators is loud and clear.

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By making your garden a welcoming place for pollinators such as bees, you help both it and the planet stay healthy.

 

You and your family can work together to plant forage for pollinators.


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