In conjunction with Pollinator Week June 20-26, we wanted to point out the pollinator pocket at the Allerton McCraw Family Visitor Center (between the Greenhouse Café and the Visitor Center), which was installed and is maintained by the Piatt County Master Gardeners.
“Pollinator-friendly areas are extremely important, especially in the Midwest where so much land is used for agriculture, and the resulting broad use of pesticides and herbicides has led to a dramatic reduction in pollinator habitat and population,” said Peter Lichtenberger, Allerton’s Park Supervisor.
“We need green spaces like parks and gardens with a diverse mix of flowers blooming throughout the season in order to promote an increased population of pollinator species,” Lichtenberger added.
“These pollinators are essential to growing much of the food we need. Do you like coffee, or chocolate, or apples or bananas or pecans or cashews? Those crops and many more require pollinators.”
The pollinator plants in the Allerton pocket includes purple coneflower, a native plant favored by many kinds of bees and butterflies. Another are zinnia plants, which bloom all summer long and also attract pollinators.
Amanda Pankau of the Prairie Rivers Network also shared some helpful links if you are interested in pollinator pockets:
— Tips in starting a pollinator-friendly garden
— Prairie Rivers Network Pollinator Week info
More on Pollinator Week can also be found here