June 21-27, 2021
What is Pollinator Week?
In 2007, the U.S. Senate unanimously approved a week in June to be designated as National Pollinator Week. The week is meant to address the increasingly urgent issue of declining pollinator populations. Today, Pollinator Week has grown into an international celebration recognizing the invaluable role pollinators play in the ecosystem.
What's the Buzz with Pollinators?
Pollinators are responsible for bringing us one in every three bites of food, sustaining our ecosystems, and producing natural resources by helping plants reproduce. You may be familiar with fuzzy buzzy honeybees, but did you know birds, bats, butterflies, beetles and other small mammals are crucial pollinators, too?
All those pollinators travel across plants carrying pollen on their bodies for a vital interaction that transfers genetic material needed to reproduce most flowering plants. These plants bear fruit (fruits, vegetables, nuts) and produce half of the world's oils, fibers and raw materials, prevent soil erosion, and increase carbon sequestration. Sounds great, right?
Unfortunately, more and more evidence reveals that our little friends' existence and part in our ecosystem are increasingly in jeopardy. Pollinator populations are changing, mostly in decline from severe loss in feeding and nesting habitats. Pollution, chemical misuse, disease, and climate change all contribute to the shift in the pollinator populations.
Alarming news, we know. But take a look below at ways we can help.
We Love Our Bees
Pollinators provide pollination services to over 180,000 plant species and more than 1,200 crops, contributing $217 billion to the global economy. Honeybees alone are responsible for over a billion dollars in agricultural productivity within the U.S.
So, they produce mass amounts of money, booming food crops, and cleaner air. It's time to show them that we care! Keep reading for ways to help the pollinators.
Build Natural Habitat Areas
Farms and other urban agriculture areas that are closer to natural habitats produce more crop yield by attracting more pollinators. Home gardens also attract pollinators, even within cities and suburbs! If you build the space, our little friends will come and help produce bigger, booming crops right in your backyard (or community gardens).
Plant the Right Plants
Planting the right plants alongside highways, farms, schools, home and community gardens, corporate landscapes and public spaces goes a long way. Check out the Pollinator Partnership's planting guides for more information regarding the best plants to plant in your zip code.
Spread the Word
Spread the word about the importance of pollinators, and the risks associated with their declining populations. Support farmers and beekeepers by buying local honey and locally produced organic foods.
Here at City Sprouts, we grow everything organically and love to show the community our very own pollinators. Our beehives are located within the community garden. We also have Thursday night farm stands with FREE produce all throughout the summer. Come say hi!
Join the Pollinator Partnership
The Pollinator Partnership is a 501(c)(3) non-profit whose mission is to promote the health of pollinators, critical to food and ecosystems, through conservation, education, and research. Donate to benefit pollinators and benefit us all.
Celebrate Pollinators Week
Though the 2021 Pollinators Week is coming to an end, we can [and will] continue celebrating our lovely little friends all year long. Show us how YOU celebrate pollinators by tagging us @OmahaSprouts on Facebook and Instagram. Or, if you have any questions, feel free to reach out anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org. Happy Pollinators Week!