Wednesday, May 27, 2015

State Botanical Garden of Georgia Celebrates National Pollinator Week with Pollinator Webinar and Walk

Across the globe, people will be celebrating Pollinator Week June 15 - 21. In Georgia, the State Botanical Garden in Athens will anticipate Pollinator Week with a webinar on June 9 featuring renowned pollinator expert, Dr. Stephen Buchmann, followed by a flower and pollinator walk around the Garden led by naturalists Dale Hoyt and Linda Chafin.
Black Swallowtail Butterfly visiting Obedient Plant along the Altamaha River.  Photo by James Holland.
Dr. Buchmann is an entomologist and Adjunct Scientist at the University of Arizona, as well as the International Director for the Pollinator Partnership, the largest organization in the world dedicated exclusively to the protection of pollinators and their ecosystems. He is the author of two books, “The Forgotten Pollinators” and “The Reason for Flowers.” Dr. Buchmann’s online presentation will explore the complex relationships between plants and pollinators and discuss the global threats to pollinator health.

Providing pollinator habitat has been a focus of the Botanical Garden for years. “The Flower Garden was created seven years ago to be a pollinator garden,” said Shelly Prescott, Director of Horticulture at the State Botanical Garden. “The Bee Pasture especially provides year-round forage for bees. But really, all of the Botanical Garden is focused on increasing pollinator habitat and the number of pollinators.”

Pollinator Week started eight years ago with a designation of National Pollinator Week by the U.S. Senate and the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture. It has since grown into an international celebration of the importance of pollinators. Without pollinators, 30% of our food crops would disappear, including most of the fruits and vegetables that Americans love. Pollinators support the plants that clean the air, stabilize soils, buffer severe weather events, and support other wildlife.

In his annual Proclamation of National Pollinator Week, U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack states that pollinators “are essential partners of farmers and ranchers in producing much of our food supply” and “provide significant environmental benefits for healthy, diverse ecosystems.”

The webinar will be held from 1:00 - 2:00 pm on Tuesday, June 9, in the Administration Building auditorium at the State Botanical Garden of Georgia, followed by an hour-long walk through the Pollinator Garden. Both the webinar and walk are free but the public is asked to register at

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