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Wildflower Project Supports Local Bee Population and Helps with Weed Control on City Medians

Information about SWMD's wildflower project.

Spring has sprung and beautiful wildflower blooms can be seen on a variety of medians throughout the city. Last year, the City Solid Waste Management Department (SWMD) launched a pilot project and planted wildflower seed mixes as a way to support the local bee population and help with weed control.

“This project is blooming and we couldn’t be happier with the results,” stated Matthew Whelan, Director of Solid Waste. “Native wildflowers not only help support our local bee population but they are also a great deterrent for weeds in our medians.”

In 2016, Albuquerque became certified by Bee City USA as a bee friendly city. Wildflowers provide nourishment for native and honey bees as well as other pollinators. They also foster peaceful and aesthetically pleasing environments. A recent study has shown that bees prefer visiting native flowers over other types of flowers. The wildflower project helps to build a bee friendly corridor throughout our city.

Once established, native wildflowers do not need fertilizers or herbicides or even watering. The simplest and most cost effective way to control weeds is the presence of maximum density native plants and flowers. In this case, wildflowers are not only good for the environment but they beautify our medians and save taxpayers time and money.

SWMD plans to scale up the wildflower project with the following goals in mind:

• To continue to make Burque a bee friendly city
• Reduce the amount of water needed for median maintenance
• Reduce the amount of herbicide needed for weed control

The most ideal time to plant wildflowers is March through the end of May and from the beginning of October through the middle of November. For more information on the project visit http://www.cabq.gov/solidwaste/clean-city-programs/wildflower-project.