The Garden Club of Denver has accepted the GCA’s Pollinator Challenge by participating in the Bees Needs project sponsored by the CU Museum of Natural History. More than 45 club members have signed up to become “Citizen Scientists” to help with the worrisome problem of the decline of the native bee population which is responsible for pollinating North American flowering plants. This project will help collect valuable information to understand the severity of the problem and the possible causes for the decline.
Thirteen wooden bee blocks have been distributed to different areas of the Denver metropolitan area and some mountain communities to be observed by our members. These blocks have rows of three different sized holes for the bees and wasps to build their nests. The blocks are to be hung with an assigned height level and an orientation of either north or south facing. Data will be collected every two weeks from April thru October on the existence or absence of nest plugs constructed by these native, solitary, wood-nesting bees and wasps, and the data will be reported online with pictures to the coordinators of the project in Boulder. We can expect nest plugs to be constructed with whole leaf pieces, flower petals, grass blades, wood or mud. Some blocks will be observed by teams of members, and a few will be watched by individuals. The areas represented are Boulder, Country Club, Lowry, Crestmoor/Hilltop, Polo Club North, Washington Park, Observatory Park, South of Hampden, Highline, Huntington Estates, Sedalia, Keystone and Edwards. Stay tuned for more “buzz” about the project and news about our busy Colorado bees!!