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How to Attract Pollinators

Pollinators are animals that help fertilize plants by carrying pollen on their bodies and transferring it from a male flower to a female flower. Common pollinators are bees, birds and butterflies. Pollinators are responsible for one out of every third bite of food we consume. They are incredibly important to all ecosystems, and for many their habitats are shrinking. Here are some things you can do to ensure your outdoor space is pollinator friendly!

1. If you have a yard, keep it messy! Leave some twig piles and fallen leaves. Pollinators can use these to build homes.

2. Install a Bug Hotel in your yard. Click the link for a DIY version that you can do at home.

3. Consider getting rid of your lawn and replace it with other flowers and plants that encourage pollination. Although lawns look nice, they don't do much for biodiversity.

4. Feed hummingbirds! Hummingbirds are attracted to the colour red, so try planting some red blooming plants in your garden.

5. Plant a mixture of native and exotic plants. Native bees are attracted to native plants, and honey bees are attracted to exotic ones. Make sure the plants you do plant are beneficial to bees, and not just pleasing to the human eye!

6. Plant sunflowers. Due to their height, sunflowers easily attract pollinators, and they look pretty too!

7. Leave some bolted veggie plants. Even if they are no longer tasty for a person, their flowers are beneficial to pollinators. So consider leaving a few in the garden.

8. Diversity is key! Make sure you have a wide variety of colours, shapes and sizes of nectar rich plants in your garden, to keep as many pollinators happy as you can.

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