Measuring Pollinator Abundance in Flower Margins Surrounding Agricultural Systems

  Strong biodiversity is an important factor in maintaining healthy landscapes, wild and agricultural alike. There is a plethora of research that suggests high flowering plant abundance promotes a high pollinator abundance. Some of these studies included biodiversity studies along ecological margins, which are essentially the boundaries between two plant communities. A classic example would […]

Economics: Preliminary Results from Surveying Growers

As described in a previous post, growers were surveyed about their production costs, their current and projected uses of pesticides, and their perception on neonicotinoids. We have some preliminary results to report, with more forthcoming in future publications. Plants identified as having high profit margins for growers through our survey. When it comes to growers’ [...]

*Research Published*: Honey Bee-Attractiveness of Ornamental Nursery Plant Genera

Rosa Syringa Spiraea In January 2020, Nature Research Journal published a scientific report from Sponsler et al. that highlights the importance of pollinator-friendly woody plant genera.  In managed greenspaces, it is often assumed that pollinator communities are supported by a variety of ornamental horticulture. However, Sponsler and our pollinator team members know that many ornamental [...]

Another Field Season Complete

In the fall of 2018, our team completed another field season tracking the environmental horticulture plants that are visited by pollinators. Some preliminary patterns are now starting to emerge, with a few plant species appearing to be highly attractive to pollinators, but many other plant species are not-at-all attractive to pollinators. In California, for instance, [...]

Economics: Surveying Growers on the Impact of Banning Neonicotinoids

Concerns over the effects of neonicotinoids on pollinators have prompted suggestions that growers use alternative pest control products. For growers, neonicotinoids are considered very effective in controlling pest and are safe for humans. As a result, neonicotinoids are widely used across the environmental horticulture industry.  It is unclear whether growers think switching to alternative pest [...]

Residue Work Continues, but Takes Time

The residue work continues, as our teams are in midst of collecting pollen and/or nectar from snapdragons and rhododendrons. Research teams in California, Connecticut, Kentucky, Michigan, New Jersey, and South Carolina are participating in this residue work, and our analytical lab has been busy processing the pollen and nectar samples for residue levels. Salvia splendens [...]

*Research Published*: Results from Pollen Analysis

Pollen pellets, sorted by color for pesticide residue testing. Dr. Kim Stoner and her team have published pesticide residue results from their pollen analysis work. To understand which ornamental horticulture plants bees were visiting, the team had set out honey bee hives in the middle of environmental horticulture plant nurseries. The honey bees would leave [...]

Weather, Natural Disasters, and Wildlife: Impacts on our Field Work

Field work is a wonderful chance to get outside and collect data. When researchers want to study the bees that visit plants, field work usually means being outside on a warm day, looking at flowers and counting bees. Could it be any easier? It turns out that many things can get in the way of [...]