This guide introduces recommendations on how to help pollinating bees by reducing their exposure to pesticides.
It is important to have a comprehensive pest management strategy to reduce the exposure of bees to pesticides and reduce the use of pesticides during the flowering period. Planting plants that bloom and serve as food can provide additional nutritional supplements to the bees to aid during the pollination period; seek advice with a trusted beekeeper.
Parasites, diseases, lack of food and exposure to pesticides affect the health and performance of bees. This is where blueberry growers can contribute information about the processes implemented to help bees.
In simple words, pollination is a mutual beneficial relationship. Flowers provide bees with nectar or pollen and in return the bees pollinate the flowers. This is an important action since blueberries depend on pollination to produce large berries.
That is why growers, given their unique position can manage berry producing fields and make an enormous difference when reducing or mitigating the harmful effects of pesticides on bees.
Follow the following recommendations if you want to help pollinating bees:
- Pest inspection
- Use the pest production model, using the smart degree day system available at
- Select varieties of berries resistant to pests
- Avoid mixtures in the tank
- Spray during ideal situations: when bees are not out (during night) or during cold-weather and when wind speeds are low.
- Remove grass that may retain pesticides
- Apply pesticides accurately and precisely
- Learn about pesticides that are safe for bees.
Microsoft Word – Blueberry Pollinator Stewardship Guide 2021-01-26 (msu.edu)