Guest Speaker Cindy King speaks on Planting for Pollinators
January 15, 2016
Cindy King spoke at our January meeting about planting for pollinators.
Native bees experienced a 43% to 44% loss. Some of that may be due to lack of food and habitat.
Cindy gave some general recommendations and things to think about such as bloom period, number of plants, color of flower, and hybrid versus native types before going over the qualities of a number of different plants. She gave recommendations of plants focused more on native pollinators and not necessarily honey bees.
1. It is good to have a lot of flowers of one type of variety blooming at once. Many bees only visit one type of flower on a foraging trip.
2. Flowers from different varieties of plants provide different nutrition. So a greater variety of plants provide a more complete nutrition.
3. Bees seem prefer flowers that are white, yellow, blue, lavender or a color that can be seen in the UV spectrum.
4. Plant to provide continuous bloom throughout the season from Spring through Fall, especially July and August when there is less in flower in our area.
5. Some new hybrids may not provide the pollen that more native varieties offer. For example, many of the new colorful hybrid Echinacea are sterile and do not contain pollen.