Even though they’re small, fuzzy and often associated with pretty flowers on a sunny day, bees have been known to strike terror in the hearts of people everywhere. Whether you are allergic to bee stings or just fearful of the pain of being stung, bees seem to frighten many people enough to have them steering clear…
Regardless of our fear, however, bees are a necessary part of our environment and their numbers are dwindling.
According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, bee populations are falling drastically. That spells disaster for the environment and our agricultural economy. Bees are needed to pollinate food crops, among other things, and without pollination our crops cannot produce the food we need to sustain our population.
One solution to the bee shortage is to change the way we use pesticides in our gardens. Scientists think that overly toxic and overly-used pesticides are the main culprit killing our bees. They specifically mention neonicotinoids, which is the most popular class of pesticide in the world.
While pesticide use in commercial agriculture is somewhat to blame, an article by Wired.com says that backyard gardeners are also part of the problem. Everyday home gardeners often use chemical agents that are too strong for their needs and they often use too much of it.
Home gardeners can do their part by making the switch to natural pesticides that are generally also better suited for their needs. Websites like gardensalive.com carry a wide array of eco-friendly garden care products.
In addition to changing the way you use pesticides, thedailygreen.com lists things you and your family can do to help protect bees like, cultivating bee-friendly plants or building what they call a “bee condo.” The site also lists 8 companies that are bee-friendly, including Haagen Daz and Burt’s Bees.
So, while some may fear them, we all need to do our part to ensure that our bee populations thrive.