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Last summer I was lucky. I seemed to have more than a few bumblebees buzzing around my garden.
Homeowners can turn their gardens into pollinator friendly oases
WILDLIFE -- White-nose syndrome has been confirmed in Nebraska, the 30th state to document the devastating fungal disease that affects hibernating bats. The U.S. Geological Survey’s National Wildlife Health Center in Madison, Wisconsin confirmed white-nose syndrome in three bats from the Cass County mine, including...
Besides flowers for nectar and pollen, pollinator and beneficial insects need water, shelter from predators and nesting sites.
You should choose flowers that bloom progressively through the season to provide a steady source of nectar and pollen.
Pollinators help increase the production in our vegetable gardens, berry patches and orchards. In addition, flower pollination helps plants produce seeds. If there are no seeds, there will not be plants. That’s a pretty scary thought. And in turn, pollinators need both pollen and nectar in order to reproduce, so flowers and pollinators are completely reliant upon each other.
“Pollinator Friendly Gardening” devotes whole chapters to what pollinator insects need to thrive in a garden: water, shelter and food. It also addresses the fact that gardens planted with native plants attract and keep larger populations of pollinators than a garden full of conventional plants.
Washington’s newest official farm livestock has wings, not hooves, and travels in swarms, not herds or flocks. A change in state law this month officially designates beekeepers as farmers, something the industry has sought for years. It’s not an idle change in title. It makes beekeepers eligible for the same tax exemptions as those who farm the crops their bees pollinate. Before that, they were classified under state tax code as a service, like doctors or lawyers.
The bumblebee moving from flower to flower by the shores of Lake Pend Oreille had a distinctive white patch on its rear. So a wildlife technician snapped a picture, documenting a sighting of a Western bumblebee in Bonner County.
If you sit quietly in the middle of your garden, you will witness an incredible amount of activity. I’m not talking about other people in your garden, but rather, the vital role that pollinating insects play in the cycle of life that takes place every day. Without pollinators, we wouldn’t have tomatoes, peppers, eggplants, beans, peas, melons, squash, berries or tree fruits.