Attracting Pollinators to Your Vegetable Garden
Your vegetable garden is a valuable resource, not only to you for your healthy produce, but also to the local pollinator population. Pollinators, including bees, butterflies, and other insects, are essential for the continued successful growth of your garden. Here are some strategies you can use to attract these helpful pollinators to your vegetable garden:
Provide Flowers and Nectar Sources
You can make your garden even more inviting to pollinators by planting a variety of colorful flowers nearby. This gives pollinators access to nectar and pollen. Consider planting flowers such as cosmos, asters, zinnias, daisies, marigolds, and sunflowers.
Gardening organically helps attract pollinators. Pesticides, herbicides, and synthetic fertilizers can damage the delicate balance of nature and, unfortunately, can be toxic to pollinators. Going organic is the best choice for your garden, and for the pollinators.
Creating the ideal habitat for pollinators is essential. To do this, try adding the following to your garden:
- Mud – create areas of bare, moist soil for bees to get access to clay and minerals they need for nest building.
- Thickets and Brush Piles – provide shelter and nesting sites for bees.
- Gardening Structures – trellises, arches, or other garden structures with small, dark cavities for bees to hide in against weather and predators.
If you follow these tips, you can help keep your vegetable garden a safe and flourishing haven for pollinators. By providing the right plants, a pesticide-free, organic environment, and an ideal habitat, you can make sure that your garden not only produces healthy, abundant produce, but also helps local pollinators further their survival.