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Rotary Park's Pollinator Park

Why is pollination important to us?

Pollination is important to us because it is essential to produce many of the foods that we eat. Pollinators, such as bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds, help to pollinate a wide variety of flowering plants, including fruits, vegetables, nuts, and spices.

In the United States, one out of every three bites of food that we eat depends on pollinators. This includes many popular fruits and vegetables, such as apples, blueberries, almonds, avocados, and tomatoes. Pollinators also help to produce many other important foods, such as coffee, cocoa, and vanilla.

In addition to the food that we eat, pollinators also play an important role in supporting healthy ecosystems. Pollinators help to pollinate wildflowers, which are a food source for many other animals. Pollinators also help to disperse seeds, which helps to ensure the regeneration of plant populations.

Overall, pollination is important to us because it is essential to produce food, support healthy ecosystems, and maintain biodiversity.

Here are some specific examples of foods that depend on pollinators:

  • Fruits: apples, blueberries, cherries, cranberries, grapes, kiwi, lemons, limes, mangoes, oranges, peaches, pears, plums, raspberries, strawberries, watermelons
  • Vegetables: avocados, broccoli, cauliflower, cucumbers, eggplant, peppers, pumpkins, squash, tomatoes
  • Nuts: almonds, cashews, hazelnuts, pecans, walnuts
  • Spices: cocoa, coffee, vanilla

Pollinators are also important to produce many other products that we use, such as honey, beeswax, and silk.

Pollinator populations are declining worldwide due to a variety of factors, including habitat loss, pesticide use, and climate change. This is a serious problem because it threatens the production of food and the health of our ecosystems.

We can all help to support pollinators by creating pollinator-friendly habitats in our yards and gardens. We can also support pollinator-friendly farming practices and reduce our use of pesticides. By taking these steps, we can help to ensure that pollinator populations remain strong and that we continue to have access to the food and other products that they provide.

 

How big of an area can a pollinator park help?

Overall, the size of an area that a pollinator park can help in depends on several factors. However, even a small pollinator park can have a significant impact on pollinator populations and pollination rates in a wider area.

 

A well-designed pollinator park can help to improve pollinator populations and pollination rates in a relatively small area. For example, a study published in the journal PLOS ONE found that a pollinator park of just 0.62 acres was able to increase pollinator populations and pollination rates in a surrounding area of 25 acres.

However, the benefits of pollinator parks can extend even further beyond the park itself. This is because pollinators are mobile and can travel long distances in search of food and nesting sites.

A study published in the journal Nature found that pollinators from a single urban park were able to travel up to 1.2 miles to reach surrounding gardens and farms. This suggests that even a small urban pollinator park can have a significant impact on pollinator populations and pollination rates in a wider area.

 

What can I do to make a home pollinator site?

There are many things you can do to make a home pollinator site. Here are a few tips:

  • Plant native flowering plants. Native plants are adapted to your local climate and soil conditions, and they provide food and habitat for a variety of pollinator species. You can find lists of native flowering plants for your area at your local nursery or garden center.
  • Provide a variety of flowering plants that bloom throughout the growing season. This will ensure that pollinators have food available to them all year long.
  • Avoid using pesticides. Pesticides can harm pollinators, so it is important to avoid using them in your garden.
  • Provide nesting sites for pollinators. Pollinators need places to nest, so you can provide them with nesting sites by leaving bare ground, logs, and shrubs in your garden.
  • Create a water source for pollinators. Pollinators need water to drink and to bathe in. You can provide them with a water source by placing a shallow dish of water in your garden.
  • Reduce your lawn size. Lawns require a lot of water and mowing, which can be harmful to pollinators. Consider reducing the size of your lawn and planting native flowering plants in the space instead.

Here are some specific examples of native flowering plants that you can plant in your home pollinator site:

  • Asters
  • Beebalm
  • Butterfly weed
  • Goldenrod
  • Joe Pye weed
  • Milkweed
  • Purple coneflower
  • Sunflowers

By taking these steps, you can create a home pollinator site that is a haven for pollinators of all kinds.

 

VR Interactive Pollinator Park Website

 Pollinator Park is an entertaining and educational VR-experience intended to raise awareness about the alarming decline of pollinators and mobilize global action to address it. This site is managed by: Directorate-General for Environment

Visit Pollinator Park

As a park visitor, try your hand at hand pollination, go grocery shopping in a pollinator-deprived world, rediscover nature’s beauty and perfection and find out how you can protect the last remaining pollinators.

Puzzle together the full story via Beatrice's diary entries: collect at least 5 for access to the final Zoom Room and a new perspective on the world outside.

https://ecenvcommpublic.env.dataplatform.tech.ec.europa.eu/pollinators-vr/index.html

 

On your computer

  • Supported by: Chrome, Edge or Firefox
  • For Mac and PC

In Virtual Reality

  • Supports: Oculus Rift, Oculus Quest
  • Available for free