According to the National Wildlife Federation (NWF), National Pollinator Week is celebrated from June 19th through June 23rd. Here are 10 simple ways to help some of the most vital pollen workers in our ecosystem all year.

Build a Bee Garden

One of the most significant threats to bees is a lack of safe habitat. You can create a haven with pollen and nectar-rich flowers by planting a bee garden. If you have the space in your yard, community garden, or balcony/patio, here are a few things you may need to get started.

  • Seeds, seedlings, or plants that are native to your area
  • Compost/organic fertilizer
  • Gardening tools (i.e., gloves, rakes, trowels, shovels, etc.)
  • Bee bath supplies (i.e., a shallow bowl or container to hold water)
  • Watering can

The Xerces Society, a nonprofit that focuses on the conservation of invertebrates, curated a regional list of recommended pollinator plants to ensure your bee garden has precisely what it needs to be successful.

Avoid Harmful Pesticides. 

Synthetic pesticides and fertilizers are harmful to bees and other sensitive pollinators. Using organic products can help the life of your garden and further the vitality and health of your bees, butterflies, flowers, and vegetables. Be sure to do your research before buying any chemicals that may put you or your loved ones in harm’s way. 

Join a Bee Community.

The Bee Conservancy has a community science team that allows its users to advance bee research with the snap of a picture. If you’re curious about taking bee observation to a new level, the team encourages you to join a nationwide network of over 3,000 observers sharing photos of local bees by uploading them to a database. The purpose is to stay educated and connect with other naturalists worldwide. More information can be found online.

Plant Trees. 

Aside from flower gardens, trees also provide a great food source and habitat for bees. Tree leaves and resin provide bee nesting material, and wood holes make natural shelters for pollinators. Some more common native trees, like maples, redbuds, and black cherries, attract and support bees. You can plant a tree in your own backyard or leverage organizations like One Tree Planted. This nonprofit makes it easy for individuals and businesses to give back to the environment, create a healthier climate, protect biodiversity, and help reforestation efforts worldwide by planting trees.  

Create a Bee Bath. 

Did you know bees get thirsty just like the rest of us? Working hard to collect nectar leave bees foraging for water, especially on a hot summer day. By filling up a shallow bird bath or bowl of clean water with pebbles and stones, you can help provide a refreshing drink. Placing the bee bath near a garden will encourage more bees to frequent your flowers.

Clear a Space for Ground Nesting Bees.

We’re so used to seeing black and yellow bees zooming through the air, but did you know some live underground? About 70% of the world’s 20,000 bee species are ground nesting. That’s why it’s important to clear a space that’s bare, mulch-free, and well-drained in your garden.

Support Local Beekeepers. 

The easiest way to show support for pollinators without gardening, planting, or building, is to support local beekeepers. By purchasing locally made honey and beeswax products, you’re contributing to environmental groups focused on sustainable ways to collect bee biproducts. The easiest way to find a beekeeper would be at your local farmer’s market. However, if you need additional help, Bee Culture is an excellent resource for locating local beekeeper associations.

Plant Milkweed in Your Backyard.

Did you know milkweed plants support 12 species of butterflies and moths, including the Monarch butterfly? The nectar in milkweed provides vital food for pollinators and space for Monarchs to lay their eggs. Visit to learn more about when and where to plant milkweed.

Use Cover Crops.

Project Apis m. has launched a “Seeds for Bees” project to provide seeds designed to bloom at critical times of the year when natural forage is scarce. The use of cover crops helps to increase the density, diversity, and duration of bee forage while also improving soil health.

What are cover crops?

cover crop is grown for the protection and enrichment of the soil. It adds organic matter to grow better plants that attract pollinators. 

What are the benefits of planting cover crops?

  • Improves soil fertility
  • Increases organic matter and water availability
  • Enhances honey bee health and vitality
  • Boosts bee’s immune system and their ability to fight pathogens
  • Provides forage for non-bee pollinators like migrating Western monarch butterflies

With the summer months ahead, there are plenty of opportunities to help save bees and other important pollinators. To learn more about how FirstBank is helping save the planet, including the health and vitality of honey bees, visit

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