UMN and MTGF Virtual Field Day 2013, Bee Lawns

November 14, 2013

Ian Lane

Ian Lane

Graduate Research Assistant

Entomology/Horticulture

lanex173@umn.edu

 

 

 

 

 

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Did you know?

White clover is often considered a lawn weed, but is also an important source of nectar for honey bees. If you buy honey at the store, there is a good chance it is “clover” honey.

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Bee Lawns

Pollinating insects such as bees play an important role in the environment and our food system. With documented declines of Honey bees and wild bees alike worldwide, people are searching for causes and solutions. While there are many factors that contribute to this increasingly important issue, one important culprit is the loss of flowering plants from our rural and urban landscapes. One unique solution for bringing flowers back into the landscape could be our everyday lawn. To do this, we plan to evaluate a number of flowering plants and management practices that together would allow flowers to grow in a lawn.

Action Items

We are excited to do this research and share our results with you, but until then:

  • Planting flowers around your house is a great way to help your local bee community, bees love them and you will too. Here is a list of Plants for Minnesota Bees (.pdf) to get you started.
  • Andrew Smith wrote: “People fear what they don’t understand”. If you find you’re afraid of bees, consider learning more about them and how important they are. Beelab.umn.edu is a great place to start.

Additional Resources

University of Minnesota Bee Lab

Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation

Dr. Marla Spivak’s TED Talk on “Why Bees are Disappearing”