Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Bees, Butterflies and Blooms (Videos)

So here is a series of neat videos that took place, I believe, a year or two ago. It takes place in Europe so their idea of a Meadow and what plants should grow there are different than our North American Meadows. A lot of what they're planting seem to be seed mixes that are available in the nursery trade pretty much anywhere in the world. They're really well done videos, and watching them makes me feel annoyed that we don't have anyone like this making documentaries like this here in the US... that I'm aware of.

The emphasis is on feeding pollinators While this is great, the truth of the matter as I understand it is that natives are always better. They are the plants that the native pollinators evolved with to pollinate, many are very selective in their diet. Some bees are very select in the nutritional value of the pollen and nectar they take in, to the point where their young my not develop if they're fed the wrong diet. Given the choice though it is always a thousands times better to grow a random seed mix over a lawn. While the ideal nectar and pollen source may not be present, at least the pollinator has a selection. Of course there are tons of generalist pollinators that you can find in just about any garden. These don't have as selective pallet and are happy to be on most flowers. Most of the plants featured in these videos are offered at local garden centers thus very generalized. So while it's good they're providing food, I believe that if they had a wider range of native plants available to them it would help fix the issue of native plants having a shorter bloom time. Enjoy.