What’s the easiest thing you’ve ever done for money? How about keeping your front lawn in a certain way? By replacing your lawn with native long grasses and wildflowers, you could help bee populations start to recover. Plus, the state of Minnesota will pay you for it! Sounds like a win-win, right? Where’s the catch?
There isn’t one! Bees are so important to our ecosystems, as they pollinate flowers which our cattle feed on, which we eat, etc. etc. If the bees died out, scientists believe humanity would follow soon after. Minnesota has a particularly low bee population, which is why this bill was introduced.
The new state program, called Lawns to Legumes, has set aside nearly a million dollars to pay to homeowners if they grow bee-friendly lawns. The gardens hope to attract all bees, but especially the adorably-named rusty patched bumblebee, whose population has decreased by 87% since the 1990s. This is due to climate change, pesticides, habitat loss, and diseases spread by domesticated honey bees.
So, if you want to do your bit for bees, and earn a quick buck in the process, this may be for you! The department will cover up to 75% of the costs of converting your lawn, or up to 90% in specific areas where rusty patched bees are more likely to thrive.
Plus, a wild garden has a certain kind of charm to it. Yeah, you can’t play soccer on it, but when the kids have moved out, who needs that anyway? A wild garden is reminiscent of old English cottages by the sea. You can always mow it again if you don’t like it…
What do you think of this Minnesota push to save the bee populations? Let us know if you’d change your garden in the comments, and share with your family and friends.
Images courtesy of Pixabay and Pixnio.