Repopulate the Pollinators: Xerces Kits
The Escondido Creek Conservancy was recently awarded four southern California Garden kits, 128 plants total (1 kit=32 plants), from the Xerces Society through their Xerces California Monarch and Pollinator Habitat Kit Planting Program for 2022. The kits will be used to augment and expand our Coastal Sage Scrub restoration of a disturbed western facing slope at our Quarry Preserve in fall of 2022 for the benefit of pollinators and wildlife.
“We are pleased that you are willing to contribute your time and effort to participate in the Xerces California Monarch and Pollinator Habitat Kit Planting Program for 2022,” the Xerxes Society said in a press release. “Protecting and restoring habitat is a crucial step in the conservation of monarchs and native pollinators. We are excited about working with you to demonstrate how the plants in the kit can be used to create and sustain habitat.”
According to the Xerces Society, many insect pollinators are declining in California, including bees and butterflies. The Western monarch population has declined more than 95% since the 1980s, likely due to habitat loss and degradation, pesticides, and climate change. Xerxes noted that one important step we can take to protect these important animals is to increase the amount of habitat available to these species.
To this end, The Xerces Society is partnering with local organizations, tribes, agencies and agricultural producers. Xerces will provide, at no cost, habitat plant kits that contain climate-smart native plants, while the partners provide the time, labor and land to develop habitats which support monarchs and other local pollinators in California. Xerces offers a variety of different habitat kits for multiple landscapes and a number of differing regions of the state. Kits are intended to be used to create or enhance monarch and pollinator habitats on public lands, working lands or natural lands with landowner or land manager collaboration. Xerxes added that these kits are not intended for home gardens.
Want to aid in allowing our pollinators and wild lands to prosper? Visit the Xerces Society webpage, https://www.xerces.org/pollinator-conservation/habitat-kits/california, to find out if you qualify for this program and if appropriate kits are available for your region and project. The cost of the kit will be covered by Xerces. Recipients are responsible for pick-up of the kits, notifying Xerces of planting and for submitting photos and a short summary report. Happy pollinating!