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ESLT Workshop: More Than Honey Bees – Planting for Native Pollinators

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

More Than Honey Bees- Planting for Native Pollinators

Eastern Sierra Land Trust, UC Master Gardeners, and California Native Plant Society to host free Pollinator Garden Workshop on April 13th

pollinator eslt
Once a garden is ready to be certified, ESLT will award the participating gardener a $125 voucher for purchasing native plants at the CNPS native plant sale in August and receive a plaque to post when the certification process is complete. © Amy Leist

All those interested in creating a pollinator-friendly garden are encouraged to attend the free Pollinator Garden Workshop on Saturday, April 13th from 9am to 12pm at the Bishop Community Garden.  In partnership with the UC Master Gardeners of Inyo and Mono County, California Native Plant Society- Bristlecone chapter (CNPS), the Pollinator Garden Workshop will provide guidance, information, and resources to anyone ready to harness the power of pollinators and create their own pollinator haven. Local experts – including Katie Quinlan of CNPS, Julie Fontaine of Trestles Environmental Corporation, Pete Pumphrey of Eastern Sierra Audubon, and Roberta Lagomarsini of UC Master Gardeners – will share tips and techniques about using native plants, soil health, irrigation, and everything else needed to get a pollinator-friendly garden growing this spring.

It’s no secret that pollinators make the world go round. With one-third of the food supply and at least 80% of the world’s flowering plants depending on pollinators, their impact can be felt everywhere – from backyards to dinner plates. However, while honey bees get all the buzz, let’s not forget: native bees, hummingbirds, butterflies, and other lesser known pollinators are just as important!

Did you know that honey bees were actually introduced from Europe in the 1600’s? These charismatic and social bees get all the attention but California boasts an impressive number of native bees. With over 1600 different species, they are highly specialized and many co-evolved to pollinate specific native plants. What does this mean? They are often better at pollinating native plants than European honey bees, which are considered generalists. However, native bees often go unnoticed because many are solitary, live underground, and can be tiny in size. When we lose native plant habitats, we risk losing the native bees too. That is why we recommend using native plants when possible in your pollinator garden. By having diversity in our gardens, we create diversity in our pollinators and we can create more robust and productive ecosystems.

Gardeners across the Eastern Sierra can keep their backyards – along with the entire region – thriving for years to come by creating beautiful, blooming havens for pollinators.

The Pollinator Garden Workshop will also help prepare gardeners who wish to certify a pollinator garden through the Eastside Pollinator Garden Project, organized by Eastern Sierra Land Trust (ESLT). Once a garden is ready to be certified, ESLT will award the participating gardener a $125 voucher for purchasing native plants at the CNPS native plant sale in August and receive a plaque to post when the certification process is complete. This year’s Eastside Pollinator Garden Project is generously supported by a private donor.

ESLT is committed to permanently conserving the Eastern Sierra’s wild and working lands. Since launching their Eastside Pollinator Garden Project in 2014, a major focus of ESLT’s work has been making sure that native bees, butterflies, birds, and other pollinators have places where they can thrive by helping members of the Eastern Sierra community build safe havens for pollinators. Since the Eastside Pollinator Garden Project began, ESLT has certified 170 gardens and community spaces in Inyo and Mono Counties as pollinator-friendly.

Those unable to attend the workshop or those interested in purchasing native plants are encouraged to attend Eastern Sierra Land Trust’s annual celebration of spring, GardenFest, at the ESLT office (250 N. Fowler St. in Bishop) on May 4th. For more information about the Eastside Pollinator Garden Project and the upcoming workshop, please contact Gena Wood, ESLT Community Connections Program Manager at [email protected] or 760-873-4554.

pollinator
There are many ways to design a beautiful and pollinator-friendly garden and ESLT is here to help.

Eastern Sierra Land Trust works with willing landowners to protect vital lands in the Eastern Sierra region for their scenic, agricultural, natural, recreational, historical, and watershed values. To learn more about ESLT’s work and how to get involved, visit www.eslt.org.

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