Better Almonds for Bees

The Xerces Society           December 10, 2014

Working with several major food companies, and one of the largest almond producers in the world, Xerces is developing a game-changing strategy for almond production right now in California's Central Valley.

Between much needed rain showers this week, our California habitat specialist Jessa Kay Cruz, is managing a project to install nearly 5 miles of hedgerows and wildflower meadows throughout a 1,000 acre almond orchard. Thousands of flowering, drought-tolerant, native California shrubs are being planted, and hundreds of thousands of wildflower seeds are being sown to create nectar-rich habitat to support the bees that pollinate almonds.

All of this is just step one. In the year ahead we will be installing a first-of-its kind wildflower cover crop system under the trees, developing reduced-risk pest management strategies, and expanding this model to more and more orchards. The net effect, we hope, will be a better landscape for bees in California's almond country.

The Xerces Society