Great Sunflower Project - plant pollen producing LEMON QUEEN

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Great Sunflower Project - plant pollen producing LEMON QUEEN

Post by TJ » Tue Apr 27, 2010 9:56 am

San Francisco State University is heading up a project to get people to plant a variety of sunflower that produces pollen, unlike so many of the hybrid's out today. Here is their recent memo on the effort, and if you like, you can check out and participate in their bee counting efforts.

the Great Sunflower Project -

The Buzz: Time to Plant
Happy Earth Day!

I want to remind you to get your Lemon Queen sunflowers in the ground! In most places, night temperatures are staying above 55 degrees so, it is planting time! ou can get seed at your local nursery or purchase them through us here. I’ve also heard reports that you can find them for less than a dollar at places like Target and Wal-Mart. We prefer that everyone use the same variety, Lemon Queen, because other varieties have different amounts of nectar and some even have been bred to have no pollen. You can imagine that bee is not very happy to find a sunflower with no pollen. Pollen is the sole source of protein for bees.
I am so excited to share some really interesting results from last year’s data. As you know, one of the things that the Sunflower Project is trying to understand is whether urban gardens do not get enough bees coming in to pollinate their plants. To my great surprise, in looking at the data, we find pretty similar rates of bee visits in rural, suburban and urban gardens.

The gardens with the highest rates of visits were rural, second came urban and last came suburban. Remember that shorter bars are better! This is good news for urban gardeners. I haven’t looked to see whether there is something about the urban gardens, such as the gardens happening to be on average larger than the rural and suburban gardens that might be confounding these results. We have lots to do!
Let's get those sunflowers in the ground so, we can learn even more about what is happening in our bee habitats!
The Queen Bee

©2010 The Great Sunflower Project | San Francisco State University|1600 Holloway Avenue|San Francisco|94132

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Re: Great Sunflower Project - plant pollen producing LEMON Q

Post by michelle » Fri Apr 01, 2011 8:48 am

So, all of those packets of sunflower seeds I bought this year are for naught? :cry: I had skimmed the sitehttp://www.greatsunflower.orgbefore, but I must have missed that about the pollen.

Well, I have plenty of room in my yard, since it is a rental and pretty bare. I will visit the site again and check that out.

Is anyone else out there planting sunflowers or anything else for pollen production? Or do you just let the bees do their thing?


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Re: Great Sunflower Project - plant pollen producing LEMON Q

Post by Wally » Fri Apr 01, 2011 1:26 pm

With my cars staying yellow most of the summer, I don't think I want to plant for pollen. Maybe if I were in Calif.

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