Habitat for pollinators includes foraging habitat and nesting sites. Enhancing pollinator habitat in non-play areas with a diversity of wildflower species provides a food source. General considerations for pollinator-friendly plantings include the following:
- plants with a variety of colors
- flowers with different shapes and sizes
- plants with different flowering times to provide forage all season
- plants with different heights and growth habits
Simple steps for providing nesting sites for native species can include leaving stems, coarse woody debris, and exposed patches of sand or well-drained soil in out-of-play areas. In addition, easy-to-construct nesting boxes or hollow bamboo sticks can be provided for solitary nesting species.
More information on planting for pollinator species in Maryland and beneficial plants can be found in the University of Maryland Extension’s Plants that Attract Pollinators and Natural Enemies. 2015. University of Maryland. Making Room for Native Pollinators is a USGA publication that provides detailed information on creating foraging habitat, bee nesting habitat and man-made nest sites specifically on golf courses, as well as the basics of pollinator biology useful for pesticide applicators.
Best Management Practices
- When renovating out-of-play areas, plant a diversity of flowering pollinator-friendly plants.
- Leave nesting materials and sites in out-of-play areas when possible.
- Consider providing man-made nesting sites for solitary nesting species.