Flower for Pollinators

How this all got started: Pollinator counts in 2015 at the Arboretum


Contributed by Mary H. Meyer, Extension horticulturist and Professor, U of M

Total insect counts on four zinnia cultivars and six salvia species or cultivars were taken at two locations during July-September 2015 (minimum of 18 counts/days at each location) in the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum Chaska, MN and the University of Minnesota campus Display and Trial Garden in St Paul, MN. A block of plants 6-12 plants per cultivar were planted in full sun in late May or early June.

Insects were counted on flowers (assumed to be pollinators) and included honeybees, bumblebees, ants, butterflies, native bees, flies and other insects. Four different people did the counts.

Counting pollinators on 15 annual flowers
In the summer of 2015, pollinator counts were taken from June 15-July 23, 2015 at the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum annual display garden. There were 23 collection times; all counts were taken by one person who counted pollinator insects on the following 15 annuals. Flowers are listed in order of pollinator visits. Michelle Wisdom, a student intern at the Arboretum in 2015, collected this data.