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Gary350
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Location: TN. 50 years of gardening experience.

Night time pollinators in your garden.

I have been wondering, what pollinates my garden there are no honey bees? I learned online there are nighttime pollinators, moths & bats. I never would have guessed that bats are pollinators. If you hang a white bed sheet on the clothes line or hang it between 2 trees then shine a white light on the sheet after dark it glows like the moon it will attract moths. About 1am you should have 100 moths on the bed sheet. Now you can see what type moths are in your area.

Are there good & bad moths in the garden?

I have not learned yet why moths pollinate flowers?

I don't know yet why bats pollinate flowers?
Last edited by Gary350 on Fri May 03, 2019 1:04 am, edited 1 time in total.

pepperhead212
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Location: Woodbury NJ Zone 6B

Re: Nighttime pollinators in your garden.

Some bats, and many moths eat pollen, and that is how the pollination is done. I have one vegetable that needs to be pollinated at night, as that's when the flowers open - Bottle Gourds. Early on, I had to hand pollinate them, but later in the season I got more moths out there at night.
Dave

HoneyBerry
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Location: Zone 8A Western Washington State

Re: Night time pollinators in your garden.

I learned about bats as pollinators by way of an art contest some time ago. There is alot of art about pollinators out there. At first, I was surprised to learn that bats are pollinators.

Here are some links:

https://pollinator.org/shop/posters

https://www.merlintuttle.org/tag/pollination/

https://www.google.com/search?q=pollina ... iRg0zv8s1M
ISFP "The Artist"

HoneyBerry
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Location: Zone 8A Western Washington State

Re: Night time pollinators in your garden.

You will need to scroll down in the MerlinTuttle link for the painting titled
"The Pollinator" by Rhea Groepper Pettit
ISFP "The Artist"

imafan26
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Re: Night time pollinators in your garden.

Cacao is primarily pollinated by midges.

Desert rose, gardenia, kwai fah, dragon fruit are pollinated at night by moths. Most fragrant white flowers that bloom at night are pollinated mainly by moths.

Passion fruit are pollinated by the passion butterfly.

Most tropical plants are pollinated by birds, moths/butterflies, beetles, ants, or flies. Feral pigs also move material and seeds around when they root for food. Bird or Paradise (birds),magnolia (beetles), orchids (often have exclusive pollinators which means they are pollinated by a specialized pollinator. Figs are pollinated by a tiny wasp and the flowers are inside the fruit. Darwin's orchid (angraecum) is pollinated by a moth with a 11 inch tongue. However, the moth pollinates other plants as well. Most plants have multiple pollinators besides the primary ones.

Corn, eggplant, peppers are wind pollinated but can also be cross pollinated by other insects as well.

Most of the western herbs and vegetables are pollinated by bees. However, honeybees are not the primary bee species of many plants. Solitary bees like sweat bees are the primary pollinator of cucurbits. Honey bees are the late comers.

Beetles pollinate 60% of plant species. They are messy pollinators that come to eat the pollen but also pollinate the flowers as they travel from flower to flower.

Honey Bees cannot see the color red and white does not stand out for them unless it is massed. Blues, yellows,green, violet and the ultraviolet range of color are easier to see. Flowers have nectar trails that the bees can see and the bees are also attracted to scent. The flowers they prefer are small and flat with shallow nectar pouches like sunflowers, daisies, single cosmos, single zinnias, single marigolds.

Butterflies and moths can see red and are more attracted to the red flowers. They have longer tongues to reach the deeper nectar sacs in penta, alyssum and other flowers.

However, there are newer flowers that have been bred to be seedless, like some of the newer sunflowers. These flowers do not produce seed or pollen so are not good sources of food.

I actually prefer to grow parthenocarpic cucumber and squash since I get better fruit set and because I do have to cover the fruit early to keep them from getting stung by fruit flies.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

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Gary350
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Joined: Mon Mar 23, 2009 5:59 pm
Location: TN. 50 years of gardening experience.

Re: Night time pollinators in your garden.

imafan26 wrote:Cacao is primarily pollinated by midges.

Desert rose, gardenia, kwai fah, dragon fruit are pollinated at night by moths. Most fragrant white flowers that bloom at night are pollinated mainly by moths.

Passion fruit are pollinated by the passion butterfly.

Most tropical plants are pollinated by birds, moths/butterflies, beetles, ants, or flies. Feral pigs also move material and seeds around when they root for food. Bird or Paradise (birds),magnolia (beetles), orchids (often have exclusive pollinators which means they are pollinated by a specialized pollinator. Figs are pollinated by a tiny wasp and the flowers are inside the fruit. Darwin's orchid (angraecum) is pollinated by a moth with a 11 inch tongue. However, the moth pollinates other plants as well. Most plants have multiple pollinators besides the primary ones.

Corn, eggplant, peppers are wind pollinated but can also be cross pollinated by other insects as well.

Most of the western herbs and vegetables are pollinated by bees. However, honeybees are not the primary bee species of many plants. Solitary bees like sweat bees are the primary pollinator of cucurbits. Honey bees are the late comers.

Beetles pollinate 60% of plant species. They are messy pollinators that come to eat the pollen but also pollinate the flowers as they travel from flower to flower.

Honey Bees cannot see the color red and white does not stand out for them unless it is massed. Blues, yellows,green, violet and the ultraviolet range of color are easier to see. Flowers have nectar trails that the bees can see and the bees are also attracted to scent. The flowers they prefer are small and flat with shallow nectar pouches like sunflowers, daisies, single cosmos, single zinnias, single marigolds.

Butterflies and moths can see red and are more attracted to the red flowers. They have longer tongues to reach the deeper nectar sacs in penta, alyssum and other flowers.

However, there are newer flowers that have been bred to be seedless, like some of the newer sunflowers. These flowers do not produce seed or pollen so are not good sources of food.

I actually prefer to grow parthenocarpic cucumber and squash since I get better fruit set and because I do have to cover the fruit early to keep them from getting stung by fruit flies.
I see several evil looking red wasps in the garden on the plants not on the blossoms. I see lots of sweet bees they land on me every time I set under the shade tree to relax an drink a glass of ice tea. I did not know peppers are wind pollinators they would be best plants in groups not rows. I sometimes see small black fruit wasps in the garden they seem to be flying around looking for something but seldom land on anything. I see dead beatles on the patio but never see them in the garden. I have seen 2 black bumble bees so far this year. Last year there were, no honey bees, no wood bees, no bumble bees & not many wasps. There must be more pollinators that I am night seeing after dark. I have not seem any butterflies yet this year. There won't be any blossoms in the garden for several more weeks.

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