Animal pollinators are needed for the reproduction of 90% of flowering plants and one third of human food crops. Pollinators include bees, butterflies, moths, beetles, flies, birds, and bats. Each of us depends on pollinators in a practical way to provide us with the wide range of foods we eat. In addition, pollinators are part of the intricate web that supports the biological diversity in natural ecosystems that helps sustain our quality of life. Abundant and healthy populations of pollinators can improve fruit set and quality, and increase fruit size. In farming situations this increases production per acre. In the wild, biodiversity increases and wildlife food sources increase.
The Plant Materials Program is working to select plants and provide recommendations on plants which will enhance pollinator populations throughout the growing season. These wildflowers, trees, shrubs, and grasses are an integral part of the conservation practices that landowners, farmers and ranchers install as part of their conservation plan.