All Things Gardening forum: Where have all the pollinators gone?

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Name: Jeanne
Lansing, Iowa (Zone 5a)
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gardenglassgems
Jul 27, 2016 4:42 AM CST
I live in the extreme NE corner of Iowa along the Mississippi River. It is called the tri-state area cause we are close to MN and WI borders. This summer I have very few bees and butterflies in my yard and garden. I have a lot of blooming flowers all over and have seen very few bugs. I have a few grasshoppers and have only seen a few Ladybugs. Is anyone one else seeing fewer pollinators this year?
Yard decor, repurposing, and flowers,
Name: Dan
NE Ohio (Zone 6a)
psudan
Jul 27, 2016 9:12 AM CST
I live in NE Ohio and haven't seen honey bees around here in years. There are no beekeepers close and most of the wooded areas have been cleared for development. There are still some bumble bees but not a lot of those. Butterflies are few and far between. Plenty of Japanese Beetles, though!
Name: Tara
NE, Florida (Zone 9a)
Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Organic Gardener Garden Sages Birds Frogs and Toads Plant Identifier
Dragonflies Butterflies Hummingbirder Orchids Container Gardener Garden Procrastinator
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terrafirma
Jul 27, 2016 9:28 AM CST
I am in NE. Fl., and this is the first time that I had to hand/self pollinate all of my squash, and cucumbers. Sighing!
I think I'm going to blame it on our cities/state scare of Zika. Mosquito spraying is knocking out more than just mosquito's.
I know I don't have scientific proof of that, but I can't imagine what else it could be... Sighing!
Name: Cindy
Hobart, IN zone 5
aka CindyMzone5
Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
Shadegardener
Jul 27, 2016 9:46 AM CST
Last year we had tons of flying insects, including mosquitoes and dragonflies. Then we had a mild, dry winter and a short spring that turned hot and dry real fast. That's what I'm blaming here.
Name: Missy
SC (Zone 8a)
Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Region: South Carolina Plant and/or Seed Trader
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Zazinnia
Jul 27, 2016 9:53 AM CST
Chiming in from SC. We have hundreds of bees daily on our Black and Blue Salvia, Cockscombs, a noid sunflower type flower and Hot Lips sage. Also the African Blue Basil is always covered. Some of these are planted close together in a bed and my grandchildren will stand back and look, but wont go too close. Honestly, I don't get too close once they get going for the day. Rolling on the floor laughing

We also have a bumper crop of mosquitos, lizards, toads, skinks and dragonflies this year. Maybe all the rain we had last year?? We had about 16 inches at once.
"Loving God... loving each other....
and the story never ends." Lyrics by Bill and Gloria Gaither

Aint nothing flashing but the fireflies...lyrics by Paul Simon

Name: Lyn
Weaverville, California (Zone 8a)
Garden Ideas: Level 1 Garden Sages Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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RoseBlush1
Jul 27, 2016 1:02 PM CST
I do know that during our four year drought in my part of California ... it's still continuing in southern California ... I saw very few pollinators. This year, we had a wet winter and the bees are back ... Hurray!

This morning as I was spraying down plants to slow down the transpiration rate due to our triple digit temps, I found myself feeling sorry for the butterflies visiting the garden because I only had fried blooms to offer them. They did visit the plants for a sip of water and moved on. During the drought, I hardly saw any butterflies, either.
I'd rather weed than dust ... the weeds stay gone longer.
Name: Robyn
Minnesota (Zone 4a)
Seed Starter Vegetable Grower Herbs Enjoys or suffers cold winters Tomato Heads Garden Photography
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robynanne
Jul 27, 2016 3:12 PM CST
checking in from MN just north of the cities here. I don't really have other years to compare to, but I've seen a fair amount. The bumblebees and those teeny tiny little masons are the most common. I've seen a few honey bees too though. With the squash, I've been seeing a ton of those all black bees with two little yellow spots on its butt. Those are really cool to see! I've had a handful of green lacewings around but I've also been buying and putting out eggs for them and I've never seen them here before. I usually see a TON of lady bugs - like - they cover the walls and you can't shut a door without hitting one. I have seen maybe FOUR this year. That's even after buying and releasing some.

I have toyed with bee keeping and even putting up a bat house. Haven't made the leap yet though.
Name: Cindy
Hobart, IN zone 5
aka CindyMzone5
Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
Shadegardener
Jul 27, 2016 4:23 PM CST
I do see little pollinators swarming the blooming liatris in the mornings. I did spot some tiny dragonflies this afternoon. Maybe they were waiting for us to get some decent rain.
Name: Jeanne
Lansing, Iowa (Zone 5a)
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gardenglassgems
Jul 28, 2016 6:40 AM CST
Thanks everyone for telling us all what you are seeing in your areas. I have quite a few of the little white butterflies flying around my garden. I have also seen a few Monarchs and a few Swallowtails but not near as many as other years. I usually have tons of bees around my Russian Sage but haven't noticed a one yet this year. I have only seen a few Lady bugs. Not sure if I even know the difference between them and the Japanese Beetle. Oh, I have also seen quite a few small and larger Dragonflies.
Yard decor, repurposing, and flowers,

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