With spring just around the corner, its time to pull our tools out of the shed and prepare our gardens. Besides planting the usual flowers, fruits, and veggies, there is a a fun, beautiful, and useful way to help our pollinator friends: planting a pollinator garden.
A pollinator garden - simply put - is a garden of mostly flower that attracts all kinds of pollinators such as bees, butterflies, hummingbirds, and many other beneficial creatures that are able to transfer pollen from one flower to another. These creatures are essential to us due to their ability to pollinate and fertilize flowers. Without pollination, we would not have fruits and vegetables, as well as seeds to be planted for the next year. Sadly, these pollinators have been suffering from habitat loss and their populations are dropping rapidly due to the misuse of chemicals and the spread of invasive plant and animal species. The most important aspect of starting a pollinator garden is to provide habitat and nutrition for these important creatures, but in turn they can help our gardens thrive and and become as beautiful as ever.
What plants attract pollinators?
The best plants to use to attract pollinators are native species. These plants have adapted to the soil and environmental conditions in your area and can provide a stable source for these creatures to rest and recover. A quick search online and you can find the plants native to your areas specifically.
How can you make an effective pollinator garden?
Since bees are able to see ultraviolet colors, they mostly prefer flowers in shades of yellow, purple, and blue. They also have an impeccable sense of smell, so the more fragrant the flower, the more bees will visit your garden! Butterflies love open, sunny areas that have some shelter from the wind. They are attracted to the colors purple, white, pink, yellow, orange, and red. When picking and choosing the types of flower you want to grow in your pollinator garden, these are just a few things to keep in mind. Its also encouraged to plant a wide variety of flowers so that there is always one in bloom all through the growing season.
The main tips to keep in mind are:
- Plant a wide variety of flower of all different shapes, colors, and sizes.
- Make sure the site where the garden will be is sunny.
- Create spots of shelter from the wind.
- If your garden is big enough, group flowers of the same kind together.
- Don’t use pesticides!
We hope this article gave you some inspiration to start your own pollinator garden, wether it be on your apartment balcony in flower boxes, or next to your vegetable garden. The protecting of these creatures is vital to the survival of our own kind. They help us survive, so lets help them in return!