In our minds, one of the most important things to consider when planning a garden is how to attract pollinators. Pollinators are those wonderful little creatures that pollinate 75-95% of all flowering plants. Pollinators include bees, butterflies, birds, moths, flies, beetles, wasps and bats.
When you’re gardening under hot, dry conditions, it may seem difficult to promote pollinators and support the work they’re doing. However, don’t forget about them! It’s especially important to support them under these conditions. Read on to learn our top four tips when gardening for pollinators under dry conditions.
Gardening for Pollinators in Dry Conditions
1. Choose the right plants – Check out your local Lowe’s, Home Depot and independent nurseries. Their experts can help guide you for whats appropriate in your area.
We purchase two plants that are considered “waterwise” (i.e. drought tolerant) and also promote pollinators. We chose California Buckwheat and Catalina California Fuschia.
California Buckwheat is a drought-tolerant evergreen shrub that is a great food source for bees, butterflies and small birds. Catalina California Fuschia is a drought-tolerant perennial that is loved by hummingbirds. There are so many great options out there. These plants will not only be easy to keep alive in the summer but will also ensure that my pollinators are happy in the heat!
2. Plant a Variety of Flowers – Make sure you are planting flowers that vary in shape, color and bloom times. Don’t let things get boring for your pollinators. Different colors and shapes also attract different pollinators.
3. Skip Pesticides – The use of pesticides is a huge threat to our pollinators. You know we are vocal advocates for organic gardening and use only organic methods on our own gardens. Pesticides not only kill or injure our pollinators, but they also impact their ability to forage and find food.
4. Create Feeders and Waterers – You’re not the only one who gets thirsty and hungry working in the sun! Our pollinators can always use a little refreshment when doing their jobs. One thing you can do is make a “bee bath” – or a DIY butterfly feeder. This will help attract pollinators and assure that they have everything thing they need in hot, dry weather.
These are some ideas that I utilize in my garden. What would you add to the list? Let me know in the comments.