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Starting Your Own Native Bee Sanctuary

Articles: Starting Your Own Native Bee Sanctuary

The authors are actively involved with the Urban Bee Lab at UC Berkeley and UC Davis. The lab has been conducting an inventory of the native bees and their preferred flowers of urban California for the past five years. The lab also helps build and manage bee habitat gardens at several schools in the Bay Area, and provides environmental education to a variety of schools and groups throughout the state.

The choices we making in planting our gardens can have positive impacts on the local wildlife, a point that has become familiar to many as they develop habitat gardens. Most are created with the goal of attracting birds and butterflies. Another group of skillful fliers that inhabit nearly every garden also deserves consideration: bees. They provide us with the essential service of pollination and are the most effective pollinators we have. Gardens can be easily designed or modified to attract these important winged visitors. They come in an array of shapes, sizes, and colors and are fascinating to observe. A garden built for bees will most assuredly attract other visitors as well, since butterflies prefer nectar from many of the same flowers, and birds like to feed on seeds a...

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Articles: Calochortophilia: A Californian’s Love Affair with a Genus by Katherine Renz

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