Sustain our pollinators
The Earth will not continue to offer its harvest, except with faithful stewardship. We cannot say we love the land and then take steps
to destroy it for use by future generations.
Pope John Paul II
gray catbird on staghorn sumac
Urbanization, suburban sprawl, roads, lawns and agriculture have all contributed to the destruction of natural habitats. Even our protected natural lands are fragments separated by development causing “habitat islands”. According to Doug Tallamy in his book Bringing Nature Home, “tiny habitat islands have high rates of species extinction and emigration and low rates of speciation and immigration.” There is no way for species to move between protected areas because the lands in between won’t sustain them.
Loss of habitat and habitat fragmentation are the main causes of our pollinator population decline. Homeowners, business owners and farmers can all help by making a portion of their property a habitat corridor.
A habitat corridor is an area of quality habitat land that connects other wildlife natural habitats. Pollinator habitat corridors allow them to travel distances in order to find the resources they need to survive and multiply. Become part of a habitat corridor by planting a pollinator garden and creating a healthy pollinator habitat.
Plant a Pollinator Garden
Look around your property and see if you have room to plant a small pollinator garden. It doesn’t have to be very large. You will be amazed at how much you can help pollinators with a small 4’x6′ garden. It would also be a fun and educational project to do with your kids. Don’t know how to get started? Try one of the garden designs created by Wild World Gardens.
Create A Pollinator Friendly Habitat In Your Yard
- Choose native plants that provide pollen and nectar.
- Include some butterfly and moth host plants.
- Avoid hybrid or native cultivar plants.
- Plant in clusters rather than single specimens.
- Avoid or limit the use of herbicides and pesticides.
- Try to have pollinator food throughout the seasons. Choose a variety of spring, summer and fall blooming plants.
- Reduce the size of your lawn. Lawn provides no benefit to our ecosystem but requires much care.
- Avoid using landscape fabric, rock or thick mulch. When possible use native plant groundcovers to prevent weeds.
- Wait until spring to do a yard clean up. Try to leave old stems through the winter as many pollinators use them for overwintering. If you must cut them back in the fall, tie the stems together and store them in a corner of the yard until spring.
- Rake leaves out of your lawn only. Let as many leaves as possible remain in your garden beds until spring. Many pollinators overwinter in leaf litter.
- Help reduce light pollution. Use motion sensor, yellow or led lights outdoors.