Oregon State University Extension Service

Bees in the woods: Adding pollinator habitat to unused roads and landings (in English)


(bright music) - Hi, I'm Steve Fitzgerald. I'm the extension silviculture specialist and also director of the College of Forestry Research Forest. So when we manage forests we often kind of create disturbances. It could be a clearcut, maybe some smaller disturbances like a small patch clearcut. But those open conditions provide great habitat for encouraging what we call pollinator plant species that are important for bees and other pollinators. So when we plant trees the pollinator habitat doesn't last very long as those trees grow and close in. But there are places where pollinator habitat can be more permanent or last a longer period of time. And one of those is on landings and skid trails. And when I talk about landings, I mean log landings, where, in the harvest process, logs are brought up into a fairly large area. And that can create a really great habitat for pollinators because it's open. And that habitat can either seed in naturally or you can seed or plant various pollinating plants in and around a landing or along a skid trail. So we're on a log landing right now. And here's a perfect example behind me of some native plants that have seeded in and are growing and providing pollinator habitat. Everything from ceanothus and willow, to oceanspray and to flowering currant, cherry, a whole host of other species. And it's all free. However, you can also enhance it, take an active approach in enhancing pollinator habitat on landings and skid trails just by seeding or planting various species. And if you do it very soon after a harvest when the ground is freshly disturbed, that's the best time to actually do a seeding of pollinating plants. One of the things you need to consider in kind of helping your pollinator plants is they might need some maintenance and sometimes invasive plants like this blackberry can outcompete your pollinating plant. So you may have to do some treatment here to rid the area of blackberries so that your pollinators have plenty of room to grow. Sometimes even our native shrubs, pollinating shrubs need a little help. If you look at this shrub behind me, it's getting older, decadent, producing less flowers than it it typically would. And what you can do to rejuvenate them is actually cut them with a chainsaw or with a weed whacker. And what that does is it enhances the sprouting that will occur and then the flowering that will come after that. And thinking about enhancing pollinator habitat on your property, one of the things you want to think about is how can you provide flowering resources that span the growing season. So we know we have plants that flower early and others that flower late. In this case, we have a native willow to my far left here that flowers in April, very early. And then right here, right next to me is a oceanspray that flowers later in the summer. (bright music)

This video describes how to add bee habitat to existing roads, skid trails and landings on your forest.

Source URL: https://extension.oregonstate.edu/video/bees-woods-adding-pollinator-habitat-unused-roads-landings