Mar 3, 2017
Bee On the Lookout for New Pollinator Education Resources By Tim Hodson

As growers and retailers are continually looking for answers to consumers’ questions about pollinators and bee health issues, it can sometimes be difficult to have all the right answers.

The Horticultural Research Institute (HRI), the research affiliate of AmericanHort, has been very proactive in this area by providing our industry with research and marketing information to help educate the industry as well as the consumer.

HRI recently released “Plants Bees Like Best,” a new publication providing research-based plant recommendations for supporting bee health. This resource is the most recent addition to the ongoing pollinator-health tools provided by HRI.

“Plants Bees Like Best” was developed by researchers at the University of Kentucky and is based on research funded by HRI. The publication can help growers and retailers influence purchasing habits and connect consumers to a movement that benefits the environment — one of the major goals of our industry.

Pollinator health is an increasingly important cause for consumers in all demographics. HRI says making customers feel good about their purchases has a powerful effect on buying decisions. Their research shows that cause marketing not only catches the attention of shoppers, it encourages purchasing and turns customers into advocates for your business. One of HRI’s objectives is to equip the industry with tools to create awareness and showcase the important role horticulture plays in pollinator health.

“The industry asked us for research-based plant recommendations for pollinator supportive plants,” says Jennifer Gray, research administrator for AmericanHort. “We’re pleased to fill the need for that information in time for spring sales.”

Some of the other pollinator-health resources that HRI offers for growers and retailers includes:

  • print-on-demand point-of-purchase signs, bench cards, and plant tags;
  • sample communications timeline with “best practice” public relations ideas;
  • sample social media messages and save-and-use graphics;
  • save-and-use consumer flyer; and
  • best management practices guide for bee health in the horticultural industry.

You can download “Plants Bees Like Best” along with other pollinator-related research material at

Pollinator POP materials are also available at

Spring is almost here and consumers will be asking pollinator questions. Do you have their answers?

— Tim



Tim Hodson

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