Pollinator Spaces Project Update

This year we have encouraged community and school gardens all across Georgia to add pollinator habitat to their gardens.  The Pollinator Spaces Project website provides information to help gardeners learn about pollinator health and to create beautiful pollinator spaces.  Local UGA Cooperative Extension agents have been hosting pollinator workshops during the year.  All this adds up to beautiful, new pollinator habitat across the state!

To be included in the tally of gardens, growers send Becky Griffin (beckygri@uga.edu)  photographs of their new spaces with some information about their garden.  These new gardens are awarded a certificate of participation in Georgia pollinator history!

Pollinator Spaces Project Update
Lithia Springs Community Garden makes pollinator plants an important part of the space!

As of now, 18 Georgia counties are represented with over 48 pollinator gardens.  To see photos of these gardens, and perhaps get inspired visit the garden gallery.   Also, a story map has been created which highlights five of the spaces.  This story map will be updated this winter with an interactive Georgia map.

Zach White, of Reinhardt College, recently hosted a showing of Flight of the Monarchs.  This movie reminds us of another reason to add pollinator habitat.   The migration of the monarchs is remarkable and many of us with pollinator plants have been excited to be a part of the migration.

The reasons to add pollinator plants are many:

  • Increased pollinators activity assists in food production
  • These plants add an element of beauty to the food garden
  • Your work will aid in conservation efforts
  • Pollinator plants also attract other beneficial insects
  • You can enjoy watching the insects!

If you want to be part of this program contact Becky (beckygri@uga).  We would love to include your garden.

Happy Pollinator Gardening!

National Pollinator Week 2016

It is National Pollinator Week 2016.  Events are going on all across the nation to draw attention to pollinators and pollinator health.  What are you doing to celebrate?

We have been excited to see all of the pollinator gardens across Georgia that are being created as part of the Pollinator Spaces Project.

In Rockdale County, ANR agent Steve Pettis led a group in creating the Rockdale Community and Garden, including a pollinator space.  This garden will be a great asset to the Rockdale community.

National Pollinator Week 2016
Perennial shrubs are the bones of this pollinator space in Rockdale County.
Rockdale Community and Education Garden.
Rockdale Community and Education Garden.
National Pollinator Week 2016
A killdeer bird laid her eggs in the new garden. What a nice surprise!

Heading Southwest from Rockdale, in Coweta County Brooks Elementary School planted their school pollinator garden in late April.  Principal Amy Harrison headed up a group that planned and organized for months before they installed their new space.  Coweta County ANR agent Stephanie Butcher helped the group get off to a great start.  We look forward to seeing more photos as the garden matures.

National Pollinator Week 2016
Brooks Elementary School Pollinator Garden Installation
Brooks Elem 3
Parent and Teachers created Brooks Elementary School’s pollinator garden.

Traveling South from Coweta, the Riverquarium in Albany, Georgia, created a beautiful pollinator space.  Butterfly weed (Asclepius tuberosa), Meadow Blazingstar (Liatris ligulistylis), and Bergamot (Monarda fistulas) are just three examples of over twenty varieties of pollinator plants used in the creation of this garden.  This space will be a joy to Albany residents and visitors.  James Morgan, Doughtery County ANR agent, is an on-going resource for this group of gardeners.

National Pollinator Week 2016
Photos from the Riverquariam Pollinator Garden in Albany, Georgia
National Pollinator Week 2016
This beautiful space is full of perennials.

Creating a pollinator space of your own aids in pollinator conservation, can increase food production, and brings joy as you watch the pollinators at work.  For resources on creating your own space and to be included in Georgia pollinator history visit the Pollinator Spaces Project webpage.  Your local UGA Cooperative Extension agent can also assist you in planning your garden.

Happy Gardening!

This is the Year to Add Pollinator Spaces to Your Garden

Adding pollinator spaces to your community or school garden is a fabulous idea.  If you are a food grower, more pollinators means more pollination and increased food production!  Even if you aren’t growing food the benefits of attracting native bees, butterflies, and even honey bees are numerous.

This is the Year to Add Pollinator Spaces to Your Garden
Honey bee on winter honeysuckle

UGA’s Center for Urban Agriculture has created the Pollinator Spaces Project.  The mission is to make it easy to add pollinator habitat to any sized garden.  The process is easy:

Step #1  Learn

Learn about pollinators and pollinator plants using the Pollinator Spaces Project webpage.  The page includes a research-based plant list as well as links to pollinator events around the state and instructions on building bee homes and butterfly puddles.

Step #2  Create

Create your pollinator space.  Your garden can be as simple or as detailed as you want to make it.

Step #3  Share

Once your garden is complete and blooming send Becky Griffin (beckygri@uga.edu), our community and school garden coordinator, a photo of your new space.  Be creative.  If you work in a school garden, get your students in the picture.   When sending your photograph include some information about your garden.  You will then receive a beautiful certificate acknowledging your participation in this part of Georgia pollinator history.

This is the Year to Add Pollinator Spaces to Your Garden

At the end of 2016 we will create a map of Georgia showing the new pollinator spaces and we will design a storyboard telling the story of the project.  We will also feature new garden spaces during the year on our UGA Community and School Gardens Facebook page.

During the year we will be sharing pollinator facts, tips, and information through the webpage and the Facebook page.  So stay tuned!

Make 2016 the year YOU help pollinators by adding a pollinator space to your garden.  For more information about the project contact Becky at beckygri@uga.edu.  If you want more information on creating a garden unique to your area your local UGA Extension agent is a great resource.

Happy Gardening!