POLLINATORS are the insects that pollinate flowers
You know about bees and butterflies, but did you know that there are over 1000 species of pollinating insects in Canada? Together they are an indispensable natural resource, and their daily work is essential for over a billion dollars of apples, pears, cucumbers, melons, berries, and many other kinds of Canadian farm produce. These beneficial insects are under pressure from loss of habitat, loss of food sources, disease, and pesticides. As insect populations are threatened, so are the fruit and vegetable produce, and the wild ecosystems that depend on these pollinators.
Please bear with us ~ We will soon launch our revamped website ~
Just in time for planting season ... Are you wondering which plants will benefit pollinators in your garden? Check out OUR PLANT GUIDE for pollinator by season, complete with photos, to help you design your bee-friendly garden.
Especially for Children ... BEST FRIENDS OF THE POLLINATORS CLUB ~ Poetry and Photography Contests
Events from CANPOLIN ~
Seeds of Diversity LOTS of Seedy Saturday Events ~
Keep an eye out for the Rusty-Patched Bumblebee here (a bee on the endangered list) and here
Congratulations to Carol Dunk, past president of the Ontario Horticultural Society, who won the
2012 NAPPC Pollinator Advocate Award Canada for her work with ROADSIDES
Congratulations to Don and Marie Ruzicka of Sunrise Farm in Killam, AB, who won the
2012 NAPPC Farmer-Rancher (Canada) Pollinator Award for their sustainable farming practices
Growers and Farmers ... be sure to click on these resources
Best Management Practices for Pollination in Ontario Crops
Recommendations for Conservation of Pollinators on Farmland
A Landowner's Guide to Conserving Native Pollinators in Ontario
NAPPC Agricultural Task Force: Farmer Profiles and Resources
plus, look below to Bee Friendly Farming
Introducing ... BEE FRIENDLY FARMING® and GARDENING®
The use of this logo indicates that your agricultural practices encourage and improve pollinator health. To self-certify and find out more, click here Partners for Sustainable Pollination
R E S O U R C E S for B e e F r i e n d l y F a r m i n g ® (Gardening too!)
Comprehensive Bee-Friendly Information
Most of Canada is included within the Pollinator Conservation Resource Centre regions. Simply click on the region in which you live. If you live in the Yukon, Northwest or Nunavut Territories, use the resources listed below, starting with the Evergreen Ecozones.
Plants That Attract Pollinators
Although the regional guides to pollinator-friendly plants from the Pollinator Partnership are currently specific to the United States, there is much overlap with the Canadian provinces. There is quite a bit of valuable information to be gleaned from these guides.
If you really want to be more specific in matching plants in the ecozone that you live in, the Evergreen Native Plant Database is the place for you! First determine your ecozone on this map. Then choose the "Advanced Search" option in the Native Plant Database. You may then indicate your ecozone and scroll further down, under the Miscellaneous heading, where you can check off "Attracts Wildlife" and choose which wildlife to specify.
Evergreen Ecozones -- in combination with -- Evergreen Native Plant Database
Nectar and Pollen Plants for Native Wild Pollinators
Canadian Wildlife Federation Pollinator Plant List
Trees, Shrubs and Plants for Pollinators
North American Native Plant Society Catalogue
Guelph's Pollination Park Plant List
More Specific Mapping Tools for Regions in Canada
Natural Resources Canada: topographic maps, agriculture maps, snow cover, geology, and more
Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada: plant hardiness zones of Canada
Natural Resources Canada: land cover in Canada
Natural Resources Canada: Ecozones map
Guides to Becoming Pollinator-Friendly
Pollination Canada: Native Bees for Farmers
Xerces Society: Farming with Pollinators
Canadian Wildlife Federation: Plant for Pollinators
Canadian Geographic article Plight of the Bumblebee
Canadian Museum of Nature, link to Peter Kevan video
Partners for Sustainable Pollination, the non-profit organization that administrates the Bee Friendly Farming® program in the United States and Canada, has $3,000 available for mini-grants for projects which increase pollinator habitat and forage for bees. To be eligible, you must be a Certified Bee Friendly Farmer or Certified Bee Friendly Gardener with Partners for Sustainable Pollination. If you are interested in applying for a grant but are not yet certified, get BFF or BFG certified. Grant applications must be submitted by June 30, 2013. Download the mini-grant application above the photo.
Pollinator Conservation Digital Library
The Pollinator Conservation Digital Library
also lists plants and their pollinators. However, you generally need to know the Latin name of the flora you are searching; or you need to know the Latin name of a particular bee to find a list of plants that they like.
Making Native Bee Nests
Native bees such as Mason, Leafcutter, Mining, Sweat and Bumblebees are important and interesting pollinators you can attract to your garden by providing habitat that can be purely functional, or can double as garden art!
When constructing native bee nests, we do advise you on three aspects:
1) do your best to use natural materials, found outside, but 2) do not use cedar wood, as it has insecticidal properties (hence the reason it lasts so well in outdoor construction) and 3) ensure that the lengths of your bee condos are at least 8" long, to maintain brood sex ratios.
Consider drilling holes in stumps or logs from a felled tree... collect twigs and branches...hang bundles of bamboo or hollow shrub stems...build small gravel or rock piles in sunny locations. When collecting your natural materials, ensure there is not a native bee or two nesting there already! If you’d prefer to reclaim rather than gather wood, perhaps there is a college or shop in your neighbourhood that generates wood waste, in the form of small pieces of 2x4 (not pressure treated!). Generally, you can pick this up for free.
Would you like to take part in a nationwide citizen science project? If you are willing to grow Purplestem Aster plants and make some observations of their flowers and seeds, please email info(at)pollinationcanada.ca for more details