Worthy Garden Club has a special relationship with pollinators. Not only do we love the creatures that inhabit our gardens, we understand the important role they - and other beneficial organisms - play in healthy ecosystems. Bees, birds, beetles, bats, butterflies and moths perform valuable work moving pollen from one flower to another, producing fertile seed. They are responsible for food production and plant reproduction, creating genetic diversity in the plants they pollinate. The more diverse plant communities are, the better they are able to weather environmental changes.
Pollinators themselves are facing various threats, including pesticide poisoning, light pollution, invasive species, habitat loss and a changing climate. Worthy Garden Club is committed to local and state-wide research and restoration projects that support large-scale moves towards pollinator-friendly practices to give our native fauna the protection they need. You can help too!
Bend Pollinator Pathway
The Bend Pollinator Pathway is the first native pollinator habitat connectivity project in our region. The goal is to create a corridor of contiguous native pollinator gardens throughout our community using the adjacent lands of residents, businesses, parks and open spaces, leading to connected habitat within the range of most of our native pollinators.
Lisa Sanco, our gardener and Sustainability Educator, provides plants, seeds, muscle, expertise and education to various PP projects around Bend and we're so excited to be a part of the movement. You can join too! Follow THESE GUIDELINES to create pollinator-friendly habitat in your outdoor space and request a medallion to show your support.
Oregon Bee Project
Worthy Garden Club has been a participant in the Oregon Bee Project since 2018. We're part of the Deschutes County collecting team, netting and identifying some of the 500+ native bee species in our state. Our specimens will one day become a part of the Oregon Bee Atlas - a manifestation of four years of native bee research launched by the OBP in 2017 and the first concerted survey of native bees in the state's history. Through the dedicated work of volunteers and educators, the Oregon Bee Atlas will provide "important steps towards confronting the gulf in our knowledge about the bees of Oregon...[building] the first comprehensive account of the native bee fauna" in the state. With a baseline study in place, researchers will be able to better understand native population gains and losses in the years to come.
To read more about protecting our native pollinators and learn how to become a volunteer:
Worthy Honey Bee hive
Honey bees are amazing creatures. Though not native to the U.S., they are integral to the future of our food web and endlessly fascinating in their social structure. Worthy Garden Club's top bar hive, with a fold-down viewing window, provides valuable educational opportunities for visitors to the Worthy campus - young and old alike - and raises awareness about the plight of pollinators in this modern age. We manage our bees as naturally as we can, relying on robust gene pools to help combat common beekeeping troubles. And while we do score some honey from our hive, its main purpose is to educate visitors on the fascinating intricacies of honey bee life and what we can do to improve it. Read HONEY BEES 101 to get an intro or email firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more.
Malheur National Wildlife Refuge Pollinator Garden
We love projects that expand our reach past the boundaries of Bend. In 2018, we were fortunate enough to be approached by the Friends of Malheur National Wildlife Refuge to sponsor a pollinator garden at the refuge headquarters. Of course we said yes! Harney Basin is an oasis of diverse habitat in southeastern Oregon, almost 300 acres of big sky views and plentiful wildlife. So not only did we fund the project, we helped build and plant it.
The garden hosts several native pollinator plants including Oregon sunshine, Munro's globemallow and Douglas aster. You can find it just outside the Crane's Nest Nature Center, at the edge of Marshall Pond. It was completed in 2019, and we like to visit seasonally to help with garden upkeep - and take a dip in the local hot springs.
Worthy Farm & Gardens
Over the years, we've transformed our conventionally landscaped property into an oasis of diverse, nectar- and pollen-rich gardens. Our edible farm plantings host a rotating buffet of sage, thyme, chives, calendula, tomatoes and more, while our surrounding landscape is dedicated to high performing, dry climate pollinator plants that increase habitat for native bees, birds and butterflies.
We believe intensely in creating beautiful landscapes that reflect the scenery around us. While we've concentrated the bulk of our non-native plantings in the immediate area around the greenhouse and farm, the rest of the property is a uniquely Central Oregon experience focused on resource conservation and ecological health. Landscaping with native plants saves time, money and water while also creating a sense of place in the high desert and valuable habitat for native flora and fauna.
Worthy Garden Club & Worthy Brewing pledge their support to establish Bend as the first Bee City USA community in Oregon east of the Cascades.