Creating A Pollinator-Friendly Garden

Pollinators are under increasing stress due to habitat loss, invasive species, diseases, pesticides and climate change. Following are some tips on how you can help pollinators thrive in your garden.

  • Plant Native: Choose native plants, trees and shrubs rich in pollen and nectar.
  • Mass Plantings: Large groups of plants make it easier for pollinators to find and collect food.
  • Plant Single Bloom Varieties: The petals of double or triple bloom varieties can block access to pollen and nectar.
  • Provide Continuous Bloom: Pollinators need a continuous source of pollen from spring to fall.
  • Plant Host Plants: Butterflies lay their eggs on specific plants, the sole food source for their larva.
  • Provide Water: A bird bath with half-submerged rocks can help pollinators quench their thirst.
  • Prune and Deadhead: Remove dead flower heads to encourage new growth and a longer flowering season.
  • Reduce Mowing: To avoid disturbing ground nesting bees, mow your lawn less often.
  • Avoid Pesticides: Avoid plants/seeds treated with systemic insecticides, such as neonicotinoids.
  • Leave Dead Stems: Some bees hibernate and lay eggs in hollow stems.
  • Leave the Leaves: Rake them onto gardens to provide overwintering habitat for butterflies.

Submitted by Lorraine Kuepfer