How to protect and increase pollinators in your landscape

Published May 1, 2019

By: MSU Extension, Department of Entomology

Protecting & enhancing pollinators in urban landscapes (US North Central Rgn) helps you attract pollinators and protect them from pesticides. Download full publication or click articles below to view sections of publication. Author: David Smitley, MSU



Introduction to protecting and increasing pollinators in your landscape

Published on May 1, 2019

Most of the fruit and vegetables we eat would not exist if we did not have honey bees and native bees to pollinate the flowers they developed from.

Pollinators in urban landscapes

Published on May 1, 2019

Most plants need pollination to reproduce and grow fruit. While some plants are wind-pollinated, many require assistance from insects, bats, hummingbirds or other animals.

Factors that threaten pollinator health

Published on May 1, 2019

Most researchers agree that a combination of factors is causing declines in bee and pollinator populations, including loss of habitat or flowers that provide pollen and nectar, pesticide exposure, parasites and pathogens.

Creating and maintaining pollinator friendly habitat

Published on May 1, 2019

Many types of insects feed on pollen and nectar, although two types of pollinators receive the most attention: bees and butterflies.

Better habitat for bees

Published on May 1, 2019

In general, herbs and garden perennials are good for bees, while most annual bedding plants are less attractive to them.

Landscape plants and wildflowers attractive to butterflies for nectar feeding

Published on May 1, 2019

Many of the flowering plants attractive to bees will also be visited by butterflies. However, butterflies are attracted to flowers almost entirely for feeding on nectar.

Flowers throughout the year

Published on May 1, 2019

The best habitats for bees have flowering plants rich in nectar and pollen throughout the growing season. Survey your yard and garden to see when flowers are abundant and when they are scarce.

Biological control and Integrated Pest Management (IPM) for protecting pollinators

Published on May 1, 2019

For the past 30 years or more, most tree care professionals and many informed property owners have been managing destructive insects by minimizing pesticide use and encouraging predators and parasitoids that naturally keep pests under control.

Selection, planting and care of trees and shrubs to avoid the need for pesticides

Published on May 1, 2019

The best way to minimize pollinator exposure to pesticides is to create and maintain healthy landscapes with plants that rarely require a pesticide application.

How to control invasive pests while protecting pollinators and other beneficial insects

Published on May 1, 2019

Pesticides should never be applied unless they are necessary to maintain plant health.

Do not spray pollinator-attractive plants with insecticides when open flowers are present

Published on May 1, 2019

It is clear to most people that insecticides sprayed onto open flowers can be highly toxic to bees, even if they are sprayed early in the morning or at night when bees are not present.

Potential impact of mosquito and nuisance insect sprays on pollinators

Published on May 1, 2019

Fogging or spraying for mosquitoes or biting flies around the yard and garden with an insecticide can be very harmful to pollinators.

Considerations for disease management

Published on May 1, 2019

It was previously thought that fungicides and bactericides are harmless to honey bees and other pollinators, and in fact, most fungicides are still considered relatively safe, even while spraying when pollinators are present.

Best Management Practices

Published on May 1, 2019

Most pesticide applications by tree care professionals are due to a few exotic pests.

Protecting pollinators during home lawn grub control

Published on May 1, 2019

The most widely used insecticides for grub infestations of lawns are neonicotinoid insecticides, which are toxic to pollinators if they are sprayed over flowers.


Published on May 1, 2019

References for protecting and enhancing pollinators in urban landscapes.

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