Pollination Conservation Challenge

In Your Backyard or Schoolyard

  1. Groomed lawns are pollinator deserts. Consider replacing parts of your lawn that you do not use recreationally with pollinator gardens containing wild, flowering plants.
  2. If you live in the country, resist the urge to mow or remove existing native vegetation, as it provides pollinators and other wild animals with valuable habitat.
  3. Creating a pollinator garden in your schoolyard is a great way to learn about nature without going on a field trip. Some organizations will even give grants to schools interested in naturalizing their grounds (http://nativeplants.evergreen.ca/).
  4. Make sure you provide pollinators with a constant supply of flowers. Design your garden so that some plants are in flower all throughout the year (e.g., spring, summer and fall).
  5. Many horticultural varieties of plants are bred to look pretty, but are not visited by native insects (e.g., double flowers). If you grow non-native plants, select varieties that are still attractive to pollinators.
  6. Leave part of your yard a bit messy. Patches of bare ground, stumps, grass clumps and brush piles provide pollinating insects with habitat.
  7. Ground-nesting bees need bare ground. Avoid covering up all of your bare soil with mulch; leave some sunny areas exposed.
  8. Put up feeders or nesting boxes for hummingbirds, butterflies and bees.
  9. Create a pollinator puddle by mixing sand, water, a little salt and some cut fruit in a shallow dish.
  10. Minimize pesticide use in your yard. Pesticides can kill pollinating insects. Handpicking or spraying soapy water may be sufficient to eliminate pests on a prized shrub or tree.
  11. Consider adding a pollinator garden you have created to our PlantSpotting App, so others can view your achievement!
Pollination Conservation Challenge - In Your Backyard or Schoolyard