This spring, the Pollinator Invitation Gardens (P.I.G.) Project is coming to Marinette County. This is an initiative to help increase pollinator habitat throughout Marinette County by installing small pocket pollinator gardens on private/public property. Pollinators include insects such as native bees, butterflies/moths, beetles, flies, some wasps; hummingbirds; and some bat species. Pollinators worldwide are being harmed by habitat loss, climate issues, human use of pesticides/chemicals, land-use practices, and more. Without pollinators, many plant species can’t produce seeds, nuts and fruits that people and wildlife need as food sources.

This project will also provide educational opportunities for residents by connecting them with nature in their own backyards or places of business. There are various opportunities for citizen science observations/projects and continuous learning about native plant habitats year-round and the organisms that depend on them.

P.I.G. is for homeowners, businesses/organizations, municipalities, churches, schools, nursing/care homes, etc. Marinette County Land & Water Conservation staff will help participants establish a small pocket garden of native perennial plants, provide resources and information necessary to maintain it, and help provide any follow-up assistance until the garden is established. This year there will be no cost for resources, labor or materials to the participants for P.I.G. installations. Garden installations will be handled in a first come — first served basis and will last as long as funding is available.

For questions or to participate in the P.I.G. project, people may contact Anne Bartels, information and education specialist, at the Marinette County Land Information Department at 715-732-7784 or abartels@marinettecounty.com.