Master Gardener Lunch & Learn

Today the Cherry Creek Pollinator Habitat hosted a Master Gardener Lunch & Learn.  Master Gardeners brought their lunch, toured the habitat and learn more about our bee structures and plant selection for pollinators.  They constructed a solitary bee nest to place in their home landscape next year from recycled and repurposed items. Master Gardeners also made nature journals and spent time in the pollinator habitat observing nature.  The Cherry Creek Habitat is the perfect place to lunch and learn.

MJ

Master Gardeners make solitary bee nests.

Master Gardeners make solitary bee nests.

naturejournal4

MG Lunch & Learn - 09

4-H Youth and Habitat Discovery

This morning Soni and I taught 4-H youth about pollinators in the Cherry Creek Pollinator Habitat. All week our office is hosting Clover College. For our Habitat Discovery session, youth did nature journaling, planted native plants in the habitat, planted sunflower seeds, installed a bee water source and made bee nesting tubes bundles for the bee nest box structure and insect hotel. At the end of the session the youth made nature journals and took home their own bee nest box to put in their landscape. Spending time educating youth about pollinators was a great way to finish Pollinator Week!

MJ

Youth journaling in habitat.

Youth journaling in habitat.

Boys on new bench in habitat.

Boys on new bench in habitat.

Nature journaling in habitat.

Nature journaling in habitat.

Youth with their new bee houses to take home.

Youth with their new bee houses to take home.

Teaching Youth about Pollinators

Yesterday Soni and I were presenters at the Outdoor Discovery Program held at Platte River State Park.  The weather was perfect, sunny, with a slight breeze. We taught 4th graders about pollinators and what they need for a habitat. We discussed one out of every three bites of food we eat is there because of pollinators. We asked the youth if they could make a list of pollinators and they easily mentioned bees, butterflies, bats and hummingbirds. The kids were surprised to learn that flies and beetles could be pollinators too. We talked about native solitary bees and showed them bee houses.The youth were able to view pollinators in action since it was a beautiful spring day and there were blooming wild plums near our site.  The kids were provided journals so they could record their observations. Thank you Nebraska Game and Parks for providing youth this wonderful educational opportunity.

M J

Waiting for kids to arrive.

Waiting for kids to arrive.

Pollinators in Mind

pollinator habitat sign

pollinator habitat sign

 

Last week I attended Managing Prairies with Pollinators in Mind workshop in Morris Minnesota at the University of Minnesota West Central Research Outreach & Extension Center. It was amazing to be in the company of so many people who are concerned about pollinators.  I was able to share our story and pictures of our habitat, bee house and insect hotel.

The participants and speakers I met are making a real impact on pollinator education.  We learned about pollinator legislation, pollinator life cycles, how to do a pollinator assessment, endangered species and insect research projects. Minnesota is leading the way on pollinator education and habitat establishment & protection. Currently it is unknown how many native bee species are in Minnesota.  Researchers there are going to compile a list.  This will be a huge task. I was impressed with the land managers who want to learn the best way to protect and promote pollinator populations.

At this workshop we all realized that now is the time to do all we can to promote pollinators and voice our concern about their decline.  Policy makers are listening. Research and education are being funded. I have returned even more motivated to expand our habitat and educate others about pollinators.

MJ