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Pollinator Power

Okay, so National Pollinator Week is almost over for 2012 – it runs from June 18-24. But hey, just cause the week is almost over doesn’t mean you can’t learn a little something about it. Doesn’t mean you can’t take action to promote pollinators. Like plant some butterfly weed.

It’s just a week to make you aware of the importance of the pollinators. It is NOT the only week you can do something. Here’s some info from the website to give you a bit of what NPW is about.

Pollinator Week was initiated and is managed by the Pollinator Partnership.

Five years ago the U.S. Senate’s unanimous approval and designation of the final week in June as “National Pollinator Week” marked a necessary step toward addressing the urgent issue of declining pollinator populations.  Pollinator Week has now grown to be an international celebration of the valuable ecosystem services provided by bees, birds, butterflies, bats and beetles. The growing concern for pollinators is a sign of progress, but it is vital that we continue to maximize our collective effort.  The U.S. Secretary of Agriculture signs the proclamation every year.

Pollinating animals, including bees, birds, butterflies, bats, beetles and others, are vital to our delicate ecosystem, supporting terrestrial wildlife, providing healthy watershed, and more. Therefore, Pollinator Week is a week to get the importance of pollinators’ message out to as many people as possible. It’s not too early to start thinking about an event at your school, garden, church, store, etc. Pollinators positively effect all our lives- let’s SAVE them and CELEBRATE them!

They even have a huge group of very site specific guides for different regions of the country. That is because both the plants and the pollinators are so unique in each environment. This guide includes Indiana.

Not sure what to plant? Don’t want to pack around an entire booklet? You don’t have to. There’s an app for that – the Bee Smart Pollinator App.

We added a Pollinator Garden to the back of the Tanner Orchard. It was an odd leftover piece of ground that we first planted with no-mow grass and some forbs. This year Jonathon removed all the grass and went back in with more food for pollinators. Here’s how it is looking today. It will need another year to fill in nicely.

Some plants included in it are Asclepias tuberose (butterfly weed), Aster azureus (skyblue aster), Liatris aspera (rough blazing star), Monarda fistulosa (wild bergamot), and Solidago speciosa (showy goldenrod).

It is also the home for the Orchard Mason Bees. Read about them here.

So remember, though National Pollinator Week is almost over, there are still things you can do. Please don’t choose to do nothing.

Until you decide what to do, here’s a little musical interlude.

Filed under: Horticulture

4 Responses to “Pollinator Power”

  • avatar
    Chad Says:

    Please think about how much we depend on pollinators for our own food. All vegetables, fruits, and nuts not to mention the feed for our livestock. We talk about how banks are too big to fail but without pollinators we all fail.

  • avatar
    irvin Says:

    Whoa. That is heavy for a Friday. But so damn true. Thanks, Chad.

  • avatar
    katie Says:

    Gwyn had a very sobering comment the other day. If things are blooming now that normally bloom in August, what will there be in August for the bees?

  • avatar
    irvin Says:

    Sobering thought indeed, Katie. I don’t sugar water is sufficient for their needs. I suppose hope for rain to get more and longer bloom and adaptibility on the bees part? It’s not good.

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