Editor's note: The following information was provided by the Todd County Soil and Water Conservation District.
Birds and deer are often the objective as to why a landowner seeks out a conservation planting on their property. On top of species specific wildlife, soil, and water benefits, we can often forget about species such as bees and pollinators. We must consider these species when deciding what to do.
The benefits of bee and pollinator conservation plantings go beyond just the benefits of pollination. The plantings often include an array of native wildflowers that showcase wonderful aesthetics.
Seed mixes also include a few species of native grasses and the combination of wildflowers and grasses make excellent brood rearing sites for upland birds and provide great birthing habitat for deer and other mammals. The dense stands of grasses and wildflowers are great cover for game animals in the fall and often pose as hunting and wildlife viewing hot spots.
Pollinator plantings will also provide many additional benefits to the soil health and water quality of the site and surrounding areas.
There may be programs available to help improve bee and pollinator habitat on private lands. If you are interested in learning more about available programs or are interested in doing a conservation planting for bees and pollinators, you should stop into the local USDA service center at 607 9th street NE Long Prairie, MN 56347 or call 320-732-6618.