The importance of protecting pollinators for a healthy planet – Charleston Post Courier


Grow a garden that attracts pollinators in the Lowcountry. Photo provided
Native plants often have bright, colorful flowers that attract pollinators. Adding native plants to your backyard garden is one way your family can help protect pollinators for a healthy planet. Provided  

Receive exciting and engaging weekly parenting content to your inbox from Lowcountry Parent.
Grow a garden that attracts pollinators in the Lowcountry. Photo provided
Does your family like to eat? What about breathing clean air? You have pollinators to thank for the fruits, vegetables and nuts you eat to fuel your life, and for contributing to the clean air that you breathe. That’s why it’s important to recognize Pollinator Week – a time to raise awareness about pollinators and take action to protect them.
Around 75% of the flowering plants in the world rely on pollinators to thrive. Those plants are responsible for preventing soil erosion, removing carbon from the atmosphere and emitting oxygen, improving air quality. Much of the food you eat and half of the world’s oils, fibers and raw materials exist thanks to pollinators like butterflies and bees.
Pollinators are defined as “all the different types of insects like moths, flies and beetles, hummingbirds, bats, butterflies, and even small mammals that move pollen or nectar from the male part of a plant to the female part or to a different plant in the garden,” explains Noni Langford, Special Projects Coordinator for the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) Grounds Department. “When pollinators travel to a different plant, they carry the pollen on their bodies to do the work or they drink the nectar and then drop it off. Once the pollinators do this important work, the process that allows plants to produce seeds and create a new generation of plants can begin. Bees are extra important because they also rely on the pollen to provide food for the hive so they are very dedicated to doing the work of pollinating flowers.”
Lowcountry families can make a difference in protecting pollinators in simple ways.
Native plants often have bright, colorful flowers that attract pollinators. Adding native plants to your backyard garden is one way your family can help protect pollinators for a healthy planet. Provided  
1. Add native plants to your backyard garden. “Families can learn more about native plants, which – once established – need little care and less water,” shares Langford. “Native plants often have bright, colorful flowers, which attracts pollinators. Perennial native plants return each year, which saves money.” Even apartment-dwelling families can contribute. “Containers on patios are great options for colorful plants. Just learn how large the full-grown plant will be when making plant selections,” Langford says.
2. Get passionate about pollinators. “There are many children’s books and YouTube resources to teach young kids about plant pollination and the important role of pollinators,” encourages Langford. “Visiting gardens is another great way to notice how insects interact with flowers.”
3. Eliminate pesticides. “The most important way families can support pollinators is to eliminate the use of pesticides,” says Noni. “This may take some time and help to learn alternate methods to avoid unwanted pests but it is worth it.”
Ready to protect the pollinators in the Lowcountry? Here are a few local resources to get your family started:
Nurseries that specialize in native plants:
Receive exciting and engaging weekly parenting content to your inbox from Lowcountry Parent.


source


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.