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Pollinator Plants

Pollinator Plants

  • The purpose of this Technical Note is to provide guidance for the design and implementation of conservation plantings to enhance habitat for pollinators including: bees, wasps, butterflies, moths and hummingbirds. Plant species included in this document are adapted to the Intermountain West; encompassing southern Idaho, eastern Oregon, northern Nevada and northern Utah.

  • The purpose of this Technical Note is to provide guidance for the design and implementation of conservation plantings to enhance habitat for pollinators and beneficial insects including: bees, wasps, butterflies, moths and hummingbirds. Plant species included in this document are adapted to the Colorado Plateau of eastern Utah and western Colorado to the Continental Divide

  • The scope of this document includes:
    • An overview of milkweed biology and ecology.
    • Descriptions of milkweeds’ role in supporting monarchs, bees, and other beneficial insects.
    • Guidelines on milkweed propagation and seed production, from seed germination through seed harvesting and processing.
    • Profiles of milkweed specialist insects that may present challenges to commercial growers.
    • A compendium of known milkweed diseases.
    • Advice on including milkweeds in habitat restoration efforts.
    • Information on which milkweed species are commercially available and appropriate for planting 
    on a regional basis.
  • This site allows users to enter their zip code to view a list of the best plants for birds in their area, as well as local resources and links to more information. 

  • Interest in bees has grown dramatically in recent years in light of several studies that have reported widespread declines in bees and other pollinators. Investigating declines in wild bees can be difficult, however, due to the lack of faunal surveys that provide baseline data of bee richness and diversity. Protected lands such as national monuments and national parks can provide unique opportunities to learn about and monitor bee populations dynamics in a natural setting because the opportunity for large-scale changes to the landscape are reduced compared to unprotected lands. Here we report on a 4-year study of bees in Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument (GSENM), found in southern Utah, USA. Using opportunistic collecting and a series of standardized plots, we collected bees throughout the six-month flowering season for four consecutive years. In total, 660 bee species are now known from the area, across 55 genera, and including 49 new species. Two genera not previously known to occur in the state of Utah were discovered, as well as 16 new species records for the state. Bees include ground-nesters, cavity- and twig-nesters, cleptoparasites, narrow specialists, generalists, solitary, and social species. The bee fauna reached peak diversity each spring, but also experienced a second peak in diversity in late summer, following monsoonal rains. The majority of GSENM’s bees are highly localized, occurring in only a few locations throughout the monument, and often in low abundance, but consistently across the four years. Only a few species are widespread and super-abundant. Certain flowering plants appear to be inordinately attractive to the bees in GSENM, including several invasive species. GSENM protects one of the richest bee faunas in the west; the large elevational gradient, incredible number of flowering plants, and the mosaic of habitats are all likely contributors to this rich assemblage of bees.

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