Councillor wants City Hall to ‘bee’ a bit more friendly

Councillor wants City Hall to ‘bee’ a bit more friendly

A bee-friendly garden was planted at the Poulavone Roundabout at Ballincollig. Cllr Ted Tynan says several such wildflower gardens are needed around the city. Picture: Larry Cummins

A COUNCILLOR is encouraging City Hall to ‘bee’ a bit more friendly by providing wildflower gardens to help with pollination.

The local authority’s summer planting schemes came in for criticism from the Cork Trees Trust recently as most of their planters were filled with Begonias.

Studies have predicted that the bumblebee could be extinct in Ireland in little over a decade’s time.

Pollinators have suffered huge declines in recent decades, with one-third of the country’s 99 bee species currently at risk of extinction.

Workers’ Party representative Ted Tynan believes more can be done to increase natural habitats for bees.

He will bring a motion to Cork City Council’s environment, water and amenity strategic policy committee next month asking the local authority to consider developing several wildflower gardens “I am asking Cork City Council to create wildflower gardens at selected locations to encourage bees and other pollinators, as well as to erect pollinator information signs at these sites, so as to provide information and encouragement to the general public on how they can do likewise,” he said.

“This has already been done by Cork County Council at Carrigaloe and has proved very popular,” he added.

Cork City Council and Cork County Council jointly hosted training by the All-Ireland Pollinator Plan last April which showed evidence-based guidelines on how to create biodiversity-friendly landscapes that are low or zero-cost.

Local authority staff, councillors, planners, engineers, landscape architects, sustainability, parks and gardens staff from all over Ireland were invited to attend.

The All-Ireland pollinator plan shows local authorities how to alter mowing regimes and road verge maintenances and use alternatives to pesticides in order to encourage bees to prosper.

The city also inherited the first bee-friendly roundabout in Ireland in May in Ballincollig at Paulavone after the area was transferred to City Hall jurisdiction.

The bee-friendly planting scheme at the roundabout is pesticide-free and includes plans for establishing a pollen corridor along the roads leading into the roundabout.

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