By Ramon Gonzalez, TreeHugger
Pollinators play an important role in the cycle of our gardens, health, and agricultural ecosystems. According to the Pollinator.org website, about 75% of all flowering plant species need the help of pollinators to move pollen grains from plant to plant for fertilization.
An estimated 1/3 of all foods and beverages consumed are helped by pollinators. That accounts for nearly $20 billion worth of products annually in the United States alone.
The majority of pollinators are beneficial insects such as butterflies, bees, beetles, wasps, and ants. A smaller, but equally important role is played by vertebrates such as birds, bats, and various small mammals.
Today marks the start of National Pollinator Week and there are many ways you can celebrate and encourage pollinators where you live.
1. Start a Garden Today
You don’t need a big, expensive, time-consuming garden to create a habitat for pollinators. Start small and grow what will keep you interested in gardening.
Keep it cheap by starting many of your plants from seeds. Earlier this spring I posted a roundup of links of some of my favorite seed companies, and TreeHugger readers chimed in with their 10 favorite seed companies.
Next: making your garden pollinator-friendly