What is Pollinator Week?
Pollinator Week (June 21-27th) is an annual event celebrated internationally in support of pollinator health. It's a time to celebrate pollinators and spread the word about what we can do to protect them. The great thing about Pollinator Week is that you can celebrate and get involved any way you like! Popular events include planting for pollinators, hosting socially distant garden tours, participating in online bee and butterfly ID workshops, and so much more. However you choose to celebrate this year, be sure to register your event on the Pollinator Partnership event map, and share your story with us by tagging us on social media using the hashtag #PollinatorWeek!
Photo Credit: Tiffani Harrison
The bees need you and you need the bees! Did you know that 1 in every 3 bites of food we eat is thanks to a bee or other pollinator? Also, our natural areas depend on bees. But, bees and other pollinators are in trouble. Habitat loss, climate change, pests and diseases, and pesticides are all contributing to bee losses.
When many of us think of bees, we think of honey bees. Honey bees are essential to agriculture in North America; along with native pollinators, honey bees pollinate many of our favourite foods like blueberries, squash, and apples. And, we of course love the delicious honey they produce. But honey bees are not originally from North America and they are managed by beekeepers, who often have a tough job keeping them healthy and producing honey. In addition to honey bees, there are over 4,000 species of bees in North America that need your help.
To help bees, we should leave the honey bee keeping to professional beekeepers. But, you CAN make a difference and help ALL bees (and other pollinators) by doing a few things in your yard and community:
Plant flowering plants in your yard or community garden. Plants that are native to your region will support an amazing diversity of pollinators that will keep your garden buzzing and productive, but other garden plants can help too. Find the best plants for your region HERE and search for native plant suppliers in your region. Other plants that are not native can also provide a lot of resources for bees, such as herbs like mint, sage, and rosemary, and ornamentals like lavender and sunflowers. Make sure to never plant invasive plants and remove them when you can—invasive plants take over areas, removing valuable native plants for pollinators. Look up your local invasive species online to find out which plants to avoid.
Did you know that mowing a bit less can help the bees and other pollinators? Lawn wild flowers can provide some resources for bees and help them along during times when there are not many other flowers. But you can go a step further by converting your lawn to a native wildflower garden or meadow, leaving some vegetation like old flowering stems (some bees nest in stems!), and provide stick piles or old wood for bees and other pollinators to call home. Bee inspired by landscapes you see in nature rather than striving for the manicured and sterile yards of yore. And remember, don’t use insecticides that are harmful to bees and other pollinators.
Photo Credit: Terena O'Hara
You can be the change! Educate yourself on how to help bees and other pollinators, take some time to sit with the bees and butterflies in your garden, put up a pollinator sign (get one HERE) to show what you are doing, and tell your friends and family about these wonderful and essential creatures. Encourage your municipality to use native plants in gardens and parks and to eliminate cosmetic pesticide use.
The bees need you and we need the bees! Follow these three actions and make a real change in your neighborhood, and in the world. To find out more about bees and how to help, visit the Pollinator Partnership Canada website HERE
WAIT DON'T LEAVE YET!
Just one more thing....
If you're a local Islander, make sure to stop by our first ever Drive-Thru Pollinator Event and pick up some FREE pollinator-friendly flowers AND some FREE Honibe product samples! Honibe is giving away 500 pollinator-friendly flowers to the first 250 cars (2 flowers per vehicle).
Where: 20 Innovation Way, Charlottetown PEI
When: Saturday, June 19th. 9:00 AM- until supplies last
Visit our FaceBook event page for more info, or to let us know you're attending!
Here's a sneak peak of all the free sample goodies we'll be giving away!
We can't wait to see you there :)
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