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Thursday, March 17, 2011

Monarch by Janette Slack

Butterflies pollinate many of our flowering plants
Monarch, 12" X 16"; Watercolor
Normally, we tend to think of insects as pests. But in truth, we can't survive without them! Mother Nature has created these lilliputian creatures to pollinate many of our food sources. Only 10% of flowering plants do not require pollination.
Too much rain, wind, or the use of pesticides can intefere with the job that insects do. Among the plants they pollinate are: herbs, spices, seeds and grains, as well as peas, beans, tomatoes, cucumbers, apples, melons, peaches, pears, peppers, lemons, limes, carrots, onions, cashews, celery, figs, sunflowers, blueberries, clover, and squash - not to mention coffee and chocolate!

Habitat loss, fragmentation, manicured lawns, non-native gardens, and the cultivation of modified corn (monarchs) are the greatest threats to pollinators.

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