How can I promote healthy bee population in my garden/neighborhood?
We live well within Salem city limits. We have a multitude of flowering plants which attract bees, which is good, but we are concerned about the world's declining bee population, particularly pollinators important for agriculture. What can we do on a local level to promote more and healthier bees?
Marion County Oregon
Thank you for your question, and for your determination to help our pollinators! Although the Extension Service and OSU have certainly prioritized this mission as well, I think the best reference I can provide you is that to the Xerces Society which, often in combination with the universities, provides a wide range of programs, publications and efforts. They have a presence in Portland, as the link directs, but they also bring together groups and science from across multiple venues. I'm particularly enthralled with their native bee nest publication.
Also locally, there is available to download the Metro Native Plant guide, with many suggestions for attracting pollinators (and other valuable 'critters' in our area. Too, here are links to two OSU generated resources: the Pollinator Health Research and Extension program and a short article on pollinator habitat. Finally, if you're into podcasts, here's a link to an ongoing training resource.
Hope these are helpful, and that you continue in your efforts!