closeup of a honeybee pollinator collecting nectar from a purple flower
Pollinators are essential to our ecosystem, playing a vital role in the reproduction of many plants. They are responsible for pollinating one-third of the world's food crops, and their decline has had a significant impact on our food security.
Pollinator gardens are a great way to help these important insects. These gardens are designed to provide pollinators with the food and shelter they need to thrive. They can be created in a variety of sizes and locations, from small backyard spaces to large public parks.
What are Pollinator Gardens?
pollinator garden with a variety of flowers and insects
Pollinator gardens are simply gardens that are planted with flowers and other plants that are specifically chosen to attract pollinators. These plants provide pollinators with nectar and pollen, which are essential for their survival. Pollinator gardens can also provide pollinators with shelter from predators and the elements.
Benefits of Pollinator Gardens
In addition to helping pollinators, pollinator gardens have a number of other benefits:
• They can help to increase biodiversity in your community.
• They can provide habitat for other beneficial insects, such as ladybugs and lacewings.
• They can help to beautify your community.
• They can be a great educational tool for children and adults alike.
How to Create a Pollinator Garden
Creating a pollinator garden is a relatively simple process. Here are a few tips:
• Choose a sunny location that gets at least six hours of sunlight per day.
• Select a variety of plants that bloom throughout the year.
• Avoid using pesticides, herbicides, and fertilizers, as these can harm pollinators.
• Provide a source of water for pollinators, such as a shallow dish or birdbath.
What Plants to Choose
There are many different plants that are attractive to pollinators. Some popular choices include:
• Flowers: Asters, bee balm, coneflowers, coreopsis, lavender, lilacs, milkweed, poppies, sunflowers, zinnias
• Grasses: Blue grama, little bluestem, switchgrass
• Trees and shrubs: Dogwood, elderberry, hawthorn, hazelnut, serviceberry, willow
Once you have chosen your plants, you can plant them in a variety of ways. You can create a formal garden bed, plant them in containers, or scatter them throughout your yard.
Maintaining Your Pollinator Garden
Once your pollinator garden is established, there is very little maintenance required. Simply water your plants regularly, especially during dry periods. You may also need to deadhead your plants to encourage continued blooming.
Creating a Pollinator Garden is a Great Way to Help the Environment
Pollinator gardens are a great way to help pollinators and the environment. They are easy to create and maintain, and they provide a valuable resource for these important insects. By creating a pollinator garden, you can help to ensure that pollinators continue to thrive for generations to come.