Green business, green careers and job training
Solutions that build smart communities with green careers and sustainable businesses!

Save on Career Education through Lorman Education

Our readers are offered a discount on Lorman seminars and courses. Check out their business, management and legal offers at this link to qualify for our discounts. They also offer green business training opportunities. Please visit for a complete listing of courses. Register online or call Lorman at 866-352-9539.
Home > Feature Articles > Landscaping > Plants and Habitat Strategies for Sustainable Landscaping

American Farmers Create 41,000 Acres of Wildflower Habitat for Bees in 2010

Xerces Society wildflowers for bees
The annual value of bee pollinated crops in the U.S. is estimated at $20 billion ... and these bees need sustainable habitat. Farmers are restoring that sustainable habitat.

Find green business solutions
You've probably heard that honey bees have been hit hard with the "colony collapse syndrome" in recent years. This disaster is important to all of us because the majority of our food crops are pollinated by bees - both honey bees and native bees.

The annual value of bee pollinated crops in the U.S. is estimated at $20 billion, and includes alfalfa, sunflower, canola, apples, almonds, citrus, berries, pumpkins and other economically important commodities.

All of these bees depend on habitat to survive and thrive. American farmers are taking steps to solve this problem. And their example can be an inspiration to us all to take collective action to improve our critical natural systems.

In 2010 American farmers enrolled in a USDA program to plant 41,231 acres of wildflowers.

This effort, a nationwide attempt to increase the availability of pollen and nectar for beleaguered pollinators, is made possible by new financial incentives established as part of the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP). Nearly 4,600 farmers signed up for the incentives, which were offered for the first time in the program's 25 year history.

The Conservation Reserve Program is the largest private landowner conservation program in the United States, with up to 32 million acres eligible for enrollment in long-term conservation easements. In exchange for annual rental payments, participating farmers agree to take highly erodible land out of crop production, and establish permanent vegetation to protect topsoil and provide wildlife cover. The USDA's Farm Service Agency (FSA), typically contracts with farmers to maintain these easements for 10 to 15 years.

"The new wildflower planting incentives represent a monumental shift in CRP," said Eric Mader, Assistant Pollinator Program Director at The Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation, a pollinator advocacy group based in Portland, Ore. "In the past, most CRP land was maintained in non-native grasses, which had limited value to wildlife. This change will help pollinators, provide shelter for pheasants, songbirds and endangered butterflies, and can provide global environmental benefits by encouraging deep-rooted prairie wildflowers that help sequester carbon."

Landowners who want to participate are ranked against one another to prioritize enrollments that offer the most conservation benefits. By agreeing to plant at least 10% of the CRP acres in native wildflowers, farmers receive a higher score and are more likely to be selected as program participants.

As a result, nearly 20,000 acres of new CRP pollinator habitat is being established in Colorado alone, with total commitments in Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, South Dakota and Washington ranging from 1,200 to 3,200 acres.

This added emphasis on pollinators makes CRP the largest bee conservation effort in North America. While diseases and pesticide use have been implicated in the decline of honey bees, native bumble bees and butterflies, experts also point to habitat loss as a major factor.

Partners for Sustainable Pollination - in California

Organizations like the Xerces Society and the California-based

Edited by Carolyn Allen, owner/editor of California Green Solutions
Green Solution Providers
Green companies directory
your green solutions - business, nonprofit, government program.
It's free.
| Sustainable agriculture | California agriculture | honey bees | wildflowers |

Share in Social Media

Sign Up For News & Information
Subscribe to our free solutions newsletter
"Ten+ Tips for Greening Your Office"

Read prior issues: California GreenLines

Search For Green Solutions

Custom Search
Green Career Center
Green Job Wizard
Career Certifications Directory

green job training certifications
Green Biz Center
Solutions For Green
Directory of Green Companies

Solutions for Alternative Energy

rose in natural systems
Green Living Center
Solutions for Green: Consumers

Solutions for Remodeling

Backyard Nature Center


"Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Willing is not enough; we must do." Goethe

Related Articles

Small Farm Program Shares

Agriculture and the Green Revolution – 3rd Annual Green Trade Network Summit | Salinas, CA – 12/01

Community Alliance with Family Farms

Related Green Resources

Marcom Tips
Interactive & Video Tips

Career Resources

We encourage lifelong learning to support sustainable communities and provide these select resources to help you pursue green and sustainable self-development:

Lorman Business Training Directory of On-line Business and Compliance Classes

Green Job Wizard Job and Career Certifications Directory

Job & Career Resources

Sales & Marketing
Human Resources

Green Economy

Business Sectors
Natural Resources

Solutions For Green

About Us ~ Privacy Policy
Contact Us ~ Home

Text Link Ads

AD: Place your link here


We help you green your career, workplace and community by connecting you to quality green, sustainable and high performance resources. California Green Solutions focuses attention on effective solutions that sustain our natural systems. You can support our editorial work by supporting our advertisers and spreading the word about best practices and green solutions.
California Green Solutions is a publication of Carolyn Allen ~ Copyright ©2006-2030 Carolyn Allen

B2B | Job Certifications | Alternative Energy | Events | Green Directory | LED Lights | Remodeling |
CONSUMERS | Backyard Nature | Senior Health | MultiMedia Marketing | Marketing | Networking Events | Japan |