Archive for the ‘Pollinators’Category

We depend on pollinators for over 1/3 of the food we eat


A stunning video from TED.  As described:

Pollination: it’s vital to life on Earth, but largely unseen by the human eye. Filmmaker Louie Schwartzberg shows us the intricate world of pollen and pollinators with gorgeous high-speed images from his film “Wings of Life,” inspired by the vanishing of one of nature’s primary pollinators, the honeybee.

An abridged version showing only the footage of the pollinators is shown below. In it, you’ll see a variety of bees as well as bats, butterflies, humming birds and other pollinators.

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The full TED talk about pollination and pollinators can be viewed here:

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20

09 2013

The Honeybee Conservancy celebrates Earth Day at the Battery Urban Farm’s EARTH FEST!

EarthFest 2013 at the Battery Conservancy Urban Farm

Join us as we work with nycbeekeeping.org to raise awareness about bees and beekeeping at EARTH FEST, an exciting event by The Battery Conservancy and Battery Urban Farmers and friends designed to raise awareness about food and farming and the roles that both play in sustainable communities.

EARTH FEST is free and open to the public, and will take place at Battery Urban farm on Saturday April 20 from 11am to 3pm in NYC.

This family-friendly event will offer arts and crafts, workshops, site tours, educational games, a “Roof to Table” photography exhibit, a “Meet the Farmers” table, and a community Clothing & Kitchen Swap all geared to encourage food, farming, and sustainability in NYC.  Live music and Greenmarket-sourced refreshments will round out the event.


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19

04 2013

Go a Little Less Green for the Environment

Consider Replacing Part or All of Your Front Lawn with a Pollinator-Friendly Garden

Photo by Michaela, The Gardener's Eden.

Lush, wide, green and rolling: In America, we love our lawns. We like to sprawl out on the grass for a picnic, gather on the neighbor’s lawn for a game of touch football, and set up our folding chairs and tiki-torches in the backyard green for summer barbeques. I like doing these things too, and I have a small lawn of my own in Vermont. But it’s important to remember that lawns, from an environmental perspective, provide little support for the ecosystem. In fact the tremendous amount of water, fossil fuel, fertilizers, herbicides, fungicides and insecticides used to maintain most suburban lawns makes our green-fixation downright irresponsible. And although green areas do reduce heat in cities, tightly cropped lawns do little to create habitat and provide food for birds, bees and the many other creatures sharing our world. Read the rest of this entry →


15

02 2011

Aesclepias Tuberosa: Bold, Beautiful Butterfly Weed is the Life of the Midsummer Garden Party…

Butterflyweed, North American native Aesclepias tuberosa ⓒ 2010 Michaela at TGE

Oh to be a butterfly! Just imagine fluttering upon this delightful blossom; saturated in golden-orange color and loaded with sweet nectar. What a feast! Why I’d flit from flower to flower, happily sharing precious pollen with hovering hummingbirds and buzzing bees, from sunrise to sunset. Butterflyweed in the garden? Yes, yes – don’t let the ‘weed’ moniker fool you! North American native Aesclepias tuberosa is a wonderful garden plant, forming neat and tidy, mid-sized mounds in the perennial border, where it blooms its pretty little head off on even the hottest of summer days (and boy are we having those right now – 97 degrees in the shade yesterday). Read the rest of this entry →


08

07 2010

Leave Me the Birds and the Bees, Please

“Hey farmer, farmer, put away your DDT.  I don’t care about spots on my apples.  Just leave me the birds and the bees, please.” Big Yellow Taxi, Joni Mitchell

Did you see this little news item that ran back in May:  “Italy Bans Pesticide for Bee Health”? I honestly thought at the time that it would generate more … um … buzz than it ultimately did in the media and among beekeepers, farmers, gardeners, nature lovers, as well as everyone else who likes to eat.  I’m not surprised, though.  We were likely all distracted by the 24/7 coverage of another end-of-times scenario playing out in slow motion in the Gulf of Mexico.  It has lately been a very intense news cycle, and I guess colony collapse is so very 2006.

In case you missed it, it seems that last year as a “precautionary measure” the Italian Agriculture Department banned the use of nicotine-based pesticides (known as neonicotinoids)  that coat or are infused into crop seeds – in particular corn, sunflower, rapeseed seeds — and their precautionary bet paid off.  Bee populations were restored!  There were no significant bee losses in the apiaries around the corn fields.  In southern Italian citrus groves and vineyards where these neonicotinoids were not banned, bee losses continue unabated.

Hmmmmm.

Read the rest of this entry →


02

07 2010