Great River Energy and other electric cooperatives are among the many organizations focusing on the plight of bumble bees, butterflies and the many other bugs that pollinate more than 70% of the world’s crops.
In celebration of National Pollinator Week, June 20-26, Great River Energy is proud to announce its next pollinator habitat project.
“Later this year, Great River Energy will work with Minnesota Native Landscapes on an 11-acre pollinator planting at Lakefield Junction Station,” said Byron Johnson, leader of vegetation management at the electric cooperative, referring to the power plant site near the city of Trimont in southwest Minnesota. “This will contribute to the nationwide efforts to re-establish pollinator habitat as well as save our members money by reducing the cost of maintaining the site.”
Replacing turf grass with native prairie reduces maintenance costs as native prairie is hardy once it is established and requires very little mowing, watering or fertilizer.
Johnson said the plot will be planted with a mix of pollinator-friendly species such as milkweed, black-eyed Susans, little bluestems and more. This will provide habitat for pollinators like birds, bees, butterflies and other wildlife in the near future.
Great River Energy has long been a utility leader in restoring native and pollinator-friendly habitat at its facilities and along transmission lines. These pollinator habitat projects support Great River Energy’s commitment to investing in Minnesota communities and finding innovative solutions to manage costs. Over the years, Great River Energy has restored approximately 200 acres to native or pollinator-friendly habitat. This includes plantings at its Maple Grove headquarters site and 9 acres of native pollinator habitat on its Elk River campus.
Great River Energy has a pollinator habitat team that meets regularly to continue identifying pollinator habitat opportunities.