Farmers, gardeners, and anyone who eats know we need pollinators - especially honey, solitary, bumble, and carpenter bees, as well as certain flies and beetles - to pollinate crop plants to insure there is seed for next year's plantings. Now, farmers can realize an economic advantage by certifying their land as pollinator habitat!
Protecting and supporting pollinators with the habitat they need all year long not only provides farmers with a new marketing opportunity, but can also positively impact crop yields and produce quality. Our Family Farms and Pollinator Project Rogue Valley invite you to become part of the new Bee Better movement!
The Bee Better Certified™ program just introduced by The Xerces Society and Oregon Tilth asks farms to dedicate at least 5% of their total farm area to pollinator habitat. This requirement can be met with different types of plantings, based on what best serves your farm's needs - from permanent wildflower meadows to cover crops.
Habitat is the key ingredient for a thriving pollinator population. Having a place to call 'home' for all the pollinators - including butterflies and hummingbirds - means plenty of flowering plants that will provide the sustenance they need for all stages of their life cycle, as well places to nest, and more importantly, to overwinter.
Want to learn more? If you are a farmer, check out this link about the Bee Better Campaign, and then watch this hour-long video with the details of how to Bee Better at what you already do! If you are a consumer, check out this link to learn how your shopping decisions will support this program - and the pollinators!
By Kristina Lefever
Pollinator Project Rogue Valley