April 11, 2015
Lowe’s Announces Commitment To Phase Out Neonicotinoids By 2019
Home improvement retailer Lowe’s companies announced April 9 that it has committed to eliminate neonicotinoid pesticides from its stores in a gradual phase-out over the next 48 months. In response, horticulture industry associations issued a statement that Lowe’s position is surprising, considering the most recent and positive reports on the state of honeybee health and recent peer reviewed research, and that this is an issue for which sound science must take priority.
May 27, 2015
Growers Working Hard To Protect Pollinators — And Their Businesses (Opinion)
Editor’s Note: This editorial was written and published just prior to the news coming out about Lowe’s phasing out neonicotinoids by 2019. However, that news doesn’t change the fact that growers have a long history as good stewards of their land and of the environment. As evidenced by the 2015 Top 100 Growers Report, the nation’s largest growers continue to adapt their production practices to be cognizant of environmental factors, worker safety, retailer preferences and consumer concerns. In light of Lowe’s announcement, growers who produce for the retailer are certainly working toward that mandate; but they’re also hopeful that the research currently underway will provide scientific reason for decisions made on production going forward. When the news broke last year that growers would be required to label plants treated with neonicotinoids at The Home Depot, and that other retailers were mandating growers to produce crops without neonics, I sucked in air and […]
May 14, 2015
Pollinator Health 2015: What’s Next For Horticulture?
The news on pollinators and neonicotinoids continues to fluctuate between good and bad. Research and outreach efforts backed by the Bee and Pollinator Stewardship Initiative help move the industry in a positive direction.
April 29, 2015
RISE Delivers Petition Urging President Obama To Protect Pollinators
Responsible Industry for a Sound Environment (RISE) delivered a pollinator petition to the White House Council on Environmental Quality, urging President Obama to create more habitat and forage areas for pollinators, and to consider all sources of information on, and contributors to the pollinator health issue. Nearly 600 citizens from across the U.S. signed the petition. “Our petition shows President Obama that citizens want a balanced and substantive conversation to happen on the pollinator health issue,” says Aaron Hobbs, RISE president. “The pollinator issue is very complex and research points to multiple factors affecting pollinators, including pests and parasites, microbial diseases, nutrition problems, bee management practices and climate change.” According to Hobbs, the petition highlights some of the steps the industry is taking to support pollinators. This includes creating pollinator-friendly habitats and forage areas through integrated vegetation management in utility rights-of-way and large tracts of land. “We do applaud the White House for including in […]
April 10, 2015
10 Steps For Protecting Crops And Bees
Bees stay safe and high quality crops thrive when you use bee-friendly practices designed to help both succeed. Griffin Greenhouse Supply Pro (GGSPro) has been actively discussing bee-friendly pesticide use for years. Based on its current understanding of the science and social factors at play, GGSPro currently recommends these 10 bee-friendly practices.
April 8, 2015
AFE To Fund Honey Bee Health Research Focused On Translocation Of Systemic Insecticides
The American Floral Endowment (AFE) is funding a new research project to examine the health of honey bees on ornamental plants following treatment with neonicotinoids and other systemic insecticides.
March 25, 2015
NASS Reports U.S. Honey Production Was Up By 19 Percent In 2014
Honey production in 2014 from producers with five or more colonies totaled 178 million pounds, up 19 percent from 2013, according to a March 20 report from the USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS).
March 17, 2015
4 Key Pollinator Research Projects To Be Funded By Horticultural Research Institute
The Horticultural Research Institute will grant $125,000 in financial support for four key projects as part of the Horticultural Industry Bee & Pollinator Stewardship Initiative. The Initiative has three primary goals. First, to convene a task force to develop a bee and pollinator stewardship program, including creation of best management practices for plant production. Second, to identify and fund research that will help answer key science questions and fill gaps needed to design and refine the stewardship program. Third, to seek to positively position the horticultural community and its customers by collaborating with other compatible groups interested in augmenting pollinator habitat and protection.
March 11, 2015
Pollinator Initiative Promotes Bee-Friendly Talking Points
AmericanHort and the Society of American Florists are working tirelessly with the ornamental industry's Pollinator Stewardship Initiative on a number of new projects.
December 9, 2014
Industry Has Cheers And Jeers For White House Pollinator Health Task Force, Bischoff Says
In late November, AmericanHort and SAF submitted comments to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regarding the Obama administration’s Pollinator Health Task Force. AmericanHort is urging the task force to remain focused on their original mission and to rely on credible scientific evidence.
November 18, 2014
Pollinator Stewardship Task Force Identifies Research Agenda
The Horticulture Industry Pollinator Stewardship Task Force has developed an agenda to signal to researchers the kinds of targeted research projects the industry wishes to support.
November 14, 2014
Skagit Gardens To Eliminate Use Of Neonicotinoid Pesticides
Skagit Gardens, a wholesale grower located outside Mount Vernon, Wash., will eliminate all use of neonicotinoid pesticides beginning in January 2015.
November 11, 2014
Clarification: White House Recommends Sourcing Insecticide-Free Plants In Federal Landscape Guidelines
UPDATE: The Obama Administration's addendum to the Sustainable Practices for Designed Landscapes applies only to federal agencies “implementing landscaping practices on agency-owned or leased land or space.”
October 14, 2014
Pollinator Legislation Could Help Solve One Piece Of The Puzzle
AmericanHort encourages industry members to contact their members of Congress to support legislation that would require federal agencies to take greater action to deal with parasite and disease factors impacting the health of managed bees, specifically focusing on Varroa mites.
October 7, 2014
New Jersey Green Industry Council Will Host Pollinator Summit November 11
The New Jersey Green Industry Council's 2014 Pollinator Summit is an event and issue briefing for everyone who works in the green industry, agriculture, or related industries. The event will take place Nov. 11 at the National Conference Center, East Windsor, N.J.