Earlier this month, the long-awaited national strategy to promote the health of honey bees and other pollinators was announced, covering activities that will be undertaken by many federal agencies.
Thankfully, the strategy does not veer off to extremes. Primary goals include reducing honey bee colony losses, increasing Monarch butterfly populations, and restoring or enhancing millions of acres of land as pollinator habitat through public and private action. The biggest threat would be the loss of key tools important in plant production, including key insecticides and some fungicides and herbicides. The biggest opportunity for horticulture comes with new interest in planting plants of all types that provide pollen and nectar.
Finally, the strategy calls for significant investments in research, including by USDA agencies. Additional research will help us to understand and address the various threats to the health of honeybees, native bees, and other pollinators.