Seed World magazine ran an article last December that contained some pretty startling statistics. The author, Shannon Shindel, stated the facts, “at LEAST 80% of the worlds crop species require pollination with an estimated one out of every three bites of food coming to us through the work of animal pollinators which includes birds, bees, butterflies, bats and beetles that transfer pollen between plants… the declines in health and population of pollinators in North America and globally pose a significant threat to biodiversity, the food chain and human health”.
What Can We Do?
We can try to provide food, shelter and a water source for these hard workers and eliminate pesticide use if at all possible. In our garden we haven’t put one drop of chemical in or around our garden and yes there are pest galore but also an amazing amount of Beneficial’s that are helping to maintain a balance.
The Pollinator Partnership with NAPPC have a wonderful website that gives great tips and if you enter your zip code it provides you with your own personal full color guide specifically tailored to your region. Some of the many plants they suggest for San Diego’s Coastal Chaparral include; Yarrow, Milkweed, California Poppy, Sunflowers, Roses, Lavender, Blueberry, Eggplant, Strawberry, Geranium, Watermelon, Squash and Tomatoes. Also check out UC Berkley’s easy to read and understand guide to the Urban Bee Garden.