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Honey bee colonies need support and that can begin by planting more native flowers.
Honey bee colonies need support and that can begin by planting more native flowers. (Getty Images/iStockphoto)

Much as I enjoy Dan Rodricks’ columns, I must again (“Rodricks resolved for 2020: Plant trees, resist Amazon, pray that Lamar Jackson avoids big hits,” Jan. 2) point out to him and readers that although trees are vital, the advice to plant only trees in cleared spaces is ecologically misguided.

Instead, it is imperative that newly cleared areas and gas-and-pesticide-guzzling lawns be replaced by native flowering plants that provide food to bees and other pollinators.

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All fruit and vegetable production is totally dependent on pollination; but worldwide, bee colonies are dying out because of bee-killing pesticides and diminished areas devoted to the flowering plants on which they depend for food. Scientists are predicting, in fact, that pollinators and other insects could go extinct within a century.

Last year alone, U.S. beekeepers reported an average 40% bee colony loss. World-wide, food riots could eventually result from the hoarding of corn, wheat and other life-sustaining grain, fruit and vegetables.

Plant trees to give shade and beauty, yes, but in sunlit spaces, come spring, plant bee-friendly, native flowering plants as though your lives and the lives of future generations depend on it — because they do!

Barbara Holdridge, Baltimore

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