Minneapolis urges action to protect dwindling local bee population
Avoid pesticides, plant more food for pollinators
For planting season, the City urges all Minneapolis gardeners, landscapers and farmers to protect pollinators. That means avoiding pesticides that poison bees, butterflies and other pollinators: avoiding applying pesticides and avoiding buying plants that were already treated. Protecting pollinators also means landscaping or gardening with the kinds of plants that nourish pollinators.
Pollinator populations are in sharp decline because of an ongoing loss of plants that feed and shelter them combined with a large-scale expansion of pesticide use by homeowners, landscapers, property managers and farmers. Neonicotinoids and other systemic pesticides have been shown to kill and weaken bees and other pollinators.
Growing vegetables, herbs and fruits requires bees, butterflies and other pollinators: a necessary part of a healthy ecosystem and food system anywhere including locally to improve the health and food security of Minneapolis residents.
A 2015 resolution commits the City to not using pesticides and encourages property owners to do the same. Alternatives to pesticides can cost less while dramatically boosting habitat for pollinators.
Free plants for pollinators
The City is asking Minneapolis residents to survey the pollinator habitat in their own yards. People who answer 10 questions in the pollinator points survey May 14-18 can win free plants and seeds. The first 190 people will get vouchers in the mail to pick up five free native, pesticide-free perennial plants June 22-24. Others can claim wildflower seed bundles and pollinator push gardens (containers that hold wildflower seeds and nutrient-rich growing material).
Find more resources and more information about how to protect pollinators here: www.minneapolismn.gov/environment/bees.
May 14, 2018
Published May 14, 2018