Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Plate Update & Big Thanks!

I'm pretty excited about the recent increase in applications we've had!

I was happy when we hit- and then crossed- the 1/3rd mark at 150. 150 out of 450 doesn't sound like a lot, when you think about still needing 300 more applications. But 1/3rd seemed significant. And I was excited even as our percentage increased higher and higher into the 30's. When we hit 40%- and now stand at 42%, with more applications coming in- the 50% mark is well within reach!

I owe a big giant thanks to Dan Price, of Sweet Virginia, for his incredibly generous donation of bottles of honey to give away at events as an incentive for folks to turn in their applications on the spot! So far I've only attended two small plant sales with the honey incentive and already collected 15 applications. It's a great start, and I'm lining up more events on my calendar all the time. 

Sweet Virginia is a charitable beekeeping (and now, flower farming) cooperative located in Northern Virginia. They're a non-profit and when they sell honey, or the flowers they've recently started farming, they donate all of those proceeds to different local charities.

I am so proud to be giving away honey of THIS quality. It's local raw honey, produced from beehives near Manassas (I've seen them!), Falls Church, and other places around the DC area. It's this gorgeous, deep amber color, and not translucent- so you know it's a MUCH higher quality than the el-cheapo stuff from the grocery store. Less processing = more pollen, and pollen is good for you! And the little sample bottles would make adorable wedding or shower favors, so if you're interested in making a donation and getting those, you should definitely contact Sweet Virginia!

And if you know of any upcoming events where I might meet some like-minded pollinator supporters, please email me or leave a comment below.

Thanks to Dan! Thanks to those who have heard about this project and told others! Thanks to everyone who has turned in their applications! And, thanks to YOU for reading this :)

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Plant More Plants!

THANKS to the Washington Gardener Blog for sharing this earlier this week! That's how I heard about it, so now, I'm passing it along, too.

Plant More Plants is an initiative that encourages people to... well, do just that. Their main concern is water runoff which carries pollution through waterways and into the bay- but they emphasize there are MANY great reasons to plant more plants!

Here are some reasons to plant more plants- whether that means in already-bare areas of your yard, or taking out lawn and replacing it with more planty areas:

- The pollinators will love you! (What other reason did you think I would mention first and foremost?) :) If you plant native plants that provide nectar for the pollinators, you're providing them with food supply.

- Stormwater runoff causes pollutants to contaminate streams and rivers and it all makes its way into the Chesapeake Bay. Plants help prevent stormwater runoff!

- Plants also help prevent erosion!

- If you plant native plants, they'll need less maintenance and water (and overall care) than other non-native plants. So you'll save water and save time (and money) in having to keep up with them.

- If you have less lawn to mow, it will take you less time to mow it. Ok, that one is kind of a "duh!" but think about how you could gradually reduce your lawn over time- my neighbor plans to completely eradicate his front lawn gradually over the next couple of years by adding more plants.

Check out this video to learn more!