By: Alyssa Foster
The IU South Bend Center for a Sustainable Future hosted a “Planting for Pollinators” event on Thursday through a live stream.
The event lasted just under 45 minutes and provided viewers with information on pollinators and why they play such important roles.
IU South Bend is currently one of 11 schools in Indiana that is considered a “Bee Campus” and is the second Indiana University school to take the title.
“We have made some commitments in terms of supporting our pollinators. We have a bee campus USA committee that advocates for pollinators, making sure we’re taking care of them and not threatening their survival,” Krista Bailey, director of the Center for a Sustainable Future, said.
During the event, special guest Sam Buchanan, Environmental Education Coordinator with the St. Joe County Soil and Water Conservation District, presented information on what pollinators are, what types of things threaten them, and how we can help them.
Buchanan thoroughly explained that pollination is the process of pollen being moved from a flower’s male part to the flower’s female part. Some pollinators in Indiana include species of ants, bats, bees, beetles, butterflies, and moths, though each spreads pollen in unique ways. Wind and animals are both capable of spreading pollen.
The importance of pollinators was also discussed as they impact the health of ecosystems and assist in creating the food eaten daily. Because of their importance to environments and human life, it is important, according to Buchanan, that everybody does their part to help them.
“You can avoid habitat destruction, degradation, and fragmentation whenever you can, and you can also plant for pollinators,” Buchanan said.
There are various plants that can be grown for pollinators, and each serves a specific purpose. While Buchanan went over the various types of plants that help pollinators, she also explained the importance of considering the location, plants, space, and time that will need to be spent when planting for pollinators.
As IU South Bend is encouraging students to do their part in helping pollinators, additional resources of information have been posted around the campus for students to learn about the importance of these species. The number of plants on campus has also been increased to welcome pollinators and to provide nesting sites for pollinators. According to Bailey, there are hopes for additional “Planting for Pollinators” events to be held. Those interested in viewing the April 21 live stream can do so at https://youtu.be/usNRNOMRAy0.