Pollinators are a vital part of a healthy environment and the food we eat. Pollinators provide an important service in the environment by moving pollen between flowers and ensuring the growth of seeds and fruits. One third of everything we eat needs pollinators to propagate!
Native bees are North America’s most important group of pollinators and like all wildlife, are affected by changes in our landscape. Pollinators in the Sierra Nevada region and domesticated European honeybee populations around the globe are in decline, threatened by habitat loss, disease and pesticide use. The good news is that patches of flowers and grasses can be grown almost anywhere and will form an important food source for bees and other pollinators.
Bear Yuba Land Trust is committed to ensuring the survival of local pollinators by: planting native pollinator plants on Land Trust Preserves, providing needed open space for local beekeepers and educated the public about ways they can increase pollinator populations in backyard gardens.
What you can do:
- Change Adds Up for Bees! at BriarPatch Co-op during the months of August and September 2015, round up your purchase to the nearest dollar and the money will go to our Pollinator Project.
- Use a variety of pollinator-friendly plants in your landscape that bloom at different times of the year. Native plants support native bees best.
- Reduce or eliminate pesticide use in your landscape or incorporate plants that attract beneficial insects for pest control.
- Supply clean water in shallow dishes for pollinators as well as leaving dead tree trunks in your landscape for wood-nesting bees and beetles.
- Support land conservation in our community and Bear Yuba Land Trust to ensure that pollinators have plentiful and appropriate open space habitat. Donate here.
Some easy to grow native flowers you can plant: Baby Blue Eyes, Black Eyed Susan, Blue Eyed Grass, California Aster, California Buckwheat, California Fuchsia, California Goldenrod, California Poppy, Coneflower, Coreopsis, Five Spot, Lupine, Phacelia, Salvias, Scarlet Larkspur, Wild Peas. Bees also like non-native herbs such as: lavender, rosemary and sunflowers.
Did you know?
- One third of our food is supported by pollinators – which means every third bite we eat needs pollinators!
- Without pollinators we wouldn’t have apples, blueberries, strawberries, chocolate, almonds, melons, peaches, squashes, pumpkins – or flowers!
- There are many kinds of pollinators: European honey bees, native bees, beetles, flies, moths, butterflies, bats and hummingbirds to name a few of our most common ones.
- There are over 4,000 species of native bees. They nest underground, in twigs, debris or dead trees.
- Pollinators need flowers, water, open spaces, and grasslands for healthy communities. Like all wildlife they are affected by changes in our landscape.
Through protection of open rangelands and meadows, oak woodlands, and mixed conifer forests within the Bear River and Yuba River watersheds Bear Yuba Land Trust is committed to enhancing the quality of life for the pollinators, wildlife and people who live here. Community support of BYLT’s pasture and native grasslands restoration projects make this possible. We can’t do it without YOU!
With your help BYLT will:
Restore pasturelands and native grasslands – BYLT is leading the way to create healthy habitats for pollinators like bees and butterflies in an effort to restore native grassland ecosystems altered by decades of invasive plants. Through a new program, BYLT’s stewardship team will replant patches of pasturelands with seeds of native pollinator plants on BYLT Preserves. The program could serve as a model for other agricultural lands in the region. Data collected from BYLT’s research could help area farms and ranches learn how to increase the health of their lands while bringing in more pollinators.
Work with local beekeepers to promote healthy honeybee colonies on Land Trust Preserves – Bear Yuba Land Trust has thousands of acres of conserved land known as preserves in the Bear and Yuba River watersheds. BYLT is working with local beekeepers in need of large open spaces to station apiaries for honey bees on these lands, helping to restore worldwide populations of these important pollinators.
- A full spectrum of beekeeping supplies, honey extraction, classes and more are available at Ace Hardware A to Z Supply.
Contact local bee expert Dan Wheat at: 530.273.6608, sales@AtoZSupply.com.
- Learn more about the importance of pollinators to local agriculture from Nevada County Resource Conservation District.
- Many different organic seed mixes of native plants, garden flowers and vegetable seeds along with books about beekeeping and gardening can be found at Peaceful Valley Farm Supply.
- Visit the website of world-renowned beekeeping expert, Randy Oliver at Scientific Beekeeping.
- Visit this helpful resource: A Guide to Beekeeping from Flowers to Harvesting