Wildflower plantings on fruit farms provide pollen resources and increase nesting by stem nesting bees

Image of bee making nest in tubes.

(Twitter, Kelsey K. Graham, PhD @kelsey_k_graham) “New paper out showing benefits of wildflower plantings on fruit farms for stem-nesting #bees. Nesting almost exclusively at farms with plantings, though bees often used ‘volunteer’ species for pollen collection (not seeded species!).” The original paper.

Do more bees mean more berries? A blueberry pollination research update

Image of southeastern blueberry bee.

(Florida Blueberry Growers Association) Blueberry growers know that to get good yields, you need bees. So researchers looked at the three main pollinators of blueberries in Florida: honey bees, managed bumble bees and southeastern blueberry bees (Habropoda laboriosa). They found that the southeastern blueberry bee had the greatest effect on both percent fruit set and yield.

New scorecard ranks top food retailers on bee-friendly policies

Image of scorecard.

(PerishableNews.com) Major U.S. food retailer, Giant Eagle, released a new policy making the company the only top retailer to make a clear commitment to reduce toxic pesticide use, according to a new Bee-Friendly Retailer Scorecard released today by Friends of the Earth. The scorecard ranks 25 of the top food retailers in the United States on policies and practices related to pesticide use in their food and beverage supply chains.

Beesharing start-up brings bees and German farmers together

Image of beekeeper holding frame.

(IamExpat) The start-up introduced a new service last year for farmers and their advisors. The platform allows them to indicate how large of an area they need pollinating, what crops are being grown and whether there are other agricultural fields in the immediate vicinity. This allows them to calculate how many bees are needed for their fields, as well as what kind of bees they need: mason bees, bumble bees or honey bees.

A Philippine stingless bee helps boost coconut yields and empower women

Image of researcher walking among flowers and coconuts.

(Mongabay) Tetragonula biroi, a stingless bee native to the Philippines, is being cultivated on a farm to both produce honey and pollinate coconut trees. The farm has seen an increase of up to 50% in its coconut yields. Researchers say the presence of these pollinators, known as kiwot bees, can boost yields by up to 80%.