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19 May

Do you know what your ecoregion is?  Well I didn’t either until I started surfing around on www.pollinator.org.  Under the tab of Planting Guides, I simply inserted my zipcode to discover I live in the ecoregion of Prairie Parkland (Temperate) Province in the United States.  Just one more click and I entered into a table of contents with a wealth of information about this particular region as it relates to the need for us all to help sustain our vital pollinators.  As the co-founder of Pollinator Partnership Paul Growald says, “Farming feeds the world, and we must remember that pollinators are a critical link in our food systems.” 

For example, it is estimated that $10 billion worth of crops in the U.S. are pollinated by domestic honey bees each year.  However, there continues to be a drastic loss of honey bees each year due to Colony Collapse Disorder.   This phenomenon is a result of the inappropriate use of pesticides resulting in disease and insufficient nutrition for pollinators overall.  It’s a known fact that healthy populations of pollinators increase crop production, quality and fruit size.  Imagine a world now with diminished crops typically raised in the Prairie Parkland such as alfalfa, apples, pumpkins, soybeans, squash and watermelon to name a few.  Not a pretty sight, huh?

I highly encourage you to check out www.pollinator.org to increase your knowledge of what you can do to help.  The site provides a series of plant selection tools specific to your region.  Every one of us can have a positive impact on this world by providing necessary habitat for pollinators that provides food, shelter, water and space in which they can raise their young. 

And who exactly are the pollinators?  Birds, bees, butterflies, bats, beetles, moths and flies.  All you need to do is choose the ones you wish to attract to your garden within your specific ecoregion, provide them what they need, and begin to watch them arrive.  You’ll not only be amazed, but will have a sense of a job well done. 

“Pollinators are essential to the system – make your home their home” – Derry Macbride, National Affairs and Legislation Chairwoman, Garden Club of America

 

 

 


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