SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — Butterflies, bees, beetles and more are all pollinators and important to save.
Planting native plants and using less pesticides are both ways to help build up natural habitats for pollinators in the community.
One Sioux Falls woman has converted her entire yard into a pollinator garden in hopes of helping wildlife as much as she can.
“Look right over there, there’s a bee pollinating right now on the Echinacea,” said Ceca Cooper.
Spend just a few moments in Ceca Cooper’s front yard and you will see countless bees, butterflies and other insects enjoying all the native plants she has growing in the space.
“We dug up our whole front yard, completely the front yard and laid down this little patio and then just started planting pollinators just in this area,” said Cooper.
She has worked hard to keep her yard filled with plants for pollinators, specifically plants native to South Dakota and they now cover 100% of her yard space.
“The Echinacea, the Purple Cone flowers, the Black Eye Susans, we started there and then I eventually added a little bit every year to sort of build it up,” said Cooper.
Cooper is not the only one working to save the pollinators. At the Outdoor Campus they are currently hatching monarch butterflies.
“Here our main goal is conservation. As you can see, we’ve brought them in and we are raising them from egg all the way up to the butterfly, then we will tag them and release them and then we tag them to see their migration process because they will be traveling to Mexico,” said Faith Boyer Horticulture Intern.
“They are important for our cropping systems, for just our health of our overall ecosystem, so we really need them around otherwise we are not going to thrive and be healthy as a society,” said Catherine Beall, Monarch and Pollinator Biologist, South Dakota Pheasants Forever.
The campus also provides several classes and tips for those interested in starting their own pollinator protection space.
“Lots of different programs you can get involved with online or just being a good steward of your land and your space. So, limiting pesticides, trying to provide a variety of different plants and stuff for those insects to come to,” said Sandy Richter, program naturalist at the Outdoor Campus.
Showing that anyone can help create safe spaces for pollinators.
“I don’t know anything about gardening, I self-taught, I just did a little bit of research, it was really trial and error and a little bit of research,” said Cooper.
The outdoor campus also offers some programs to learn more about these topics.