Biodiversity is important to the enrichment of land, and there are plenty of benefits in rejuvenating your land in a positive way. Biodiversity is a rich source of nectar and pollen, and this will in turn attract positive pollinating insects like bees, ladybird beetles and butterflies! Not only can improving biodiversity boost the population of insects, but farmers that hate pests will find that aphids, scale insects, caterpillars, thrips, mealybugs and mites will be treated as prey by your new land residents.
But what does this have to do with energy crops? Well, Willow plays an important role in sustaining biodiversity on your land and helps you to control pests! Willow crops flower relatively early in the year, with catkins emerging in early Spring to provide pollinating insects with an early source of food. This rich abundance of invertebrates also attracts species such as birds and small mammals which help to enhance the biodiversity even more.
Because recent studies have shown that 40% of insect species are suffering from dramatic rates of decline in the UK, it has never been more important for biodiversity to be improved upon, as without these species of insects, our ecosystems will be massively impacted.
Willow is a dioecious tree, which means that both sexes will produce nectar, promoting local bee populations to avidly work with them. What’s vital is the pollen count, as this is a bee’s bread. While only the male plant produces pollen, there are several species that produce pollen in very large quantities during March to the end of May. This ensures that honey bees can construct their colonies and nestle into the local area, further promoting the important longevity of local biodiversity.
Pollen demand relates directly to the number of unsealed brood within a colony. If there is less pollen in a biome, then naturally there will be a lower bee population. By ensuring that the bee population is higher, you enable bees to organically grow their communities and develop the biodiversity of your area.
To find out more information about crop feasibility studies and planning for planting during Spring 2021, call Neil Watkins on 07307 494848. Orders for cuttings are made in October and November for planting in Spring the following year.