1. Big surprise…Pollinator strips support POLLINATION!
As the flowers grow and bloom, they provide food for insects such as bees and butterflies. A healthy population of these insects is important because as they collect nectar from flowers, they pollinate a huge variety of plant species, including many farm crops. And these helpful insects travel the surrounding areas, helping to pollinate plants in neighboring farms, gardens, meadows, and forests.
2. Animal Habitat
The strips also restore habitat and food for many animals including birds and small mammals. That’s important because many natural habitats have been reduced by climate change and development.
3. Pest control
Some of the animals and insects attracted by pollinator strips also prey on pests that are harmful to farm crops. That means it may be possible for the farmer to use less insecticides.
4. Clean Water
Pollinator strips are often placed on the borders or edges of farm fields, where they provide a buffer that filters water flowing off fields and keeps soil and nutrients in the field, not in nearby waterways. This important for keeping farm soils healthy and water clean.
Biodiversity is the variety of life forms that make up our natural world (animals, plants, insects…from a whale or elephant to the tiniest microbe in the soil below our feet). Each life form in an ecosystem plays a role in the planet’s health, and pollinator strips support a tremendous variety of plant and animal species. So, it’s important that we protect biodiversity through measures like pollinator habitat for the health of our planet and our communities.
6. Growing food
According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, pollinators are responsible for one in every three bites of food we take. So if you like to eat, thank a pollinator and thank the farmers who are helping them thrive.