Rumble

Supporting Pollinators in Frog Level

Supporting Pollinators in Frog Level

They are more than just a pretty space. Gardens with native plants are life support systems. People must have nutritious fruits and vegetables. They cannot survive without pollinators—bees, butterflies, birds, and bats. Pollinators must have species-specific food and nesting sites, which are provided by native flowers, shrubs and trees. 

“Pollinators are responsible for three out of every four bites of food we eat, and the majority of flowering plants depend on them for proper seed production and long-term survival,” explained Brannen Basham, a horticulturalist, native bee specialist, and writer. He and his wife Jill Jacobs run Spriggly’s Beescaping of Haywood County. 

These reasons and others inspired Frog Level Brewing, Waynesville, to hire Spriggly’s to remove non-native plants and shrubs and “bee-scape” the property they lease adjacent to the brewpub. The garden that Basham designed protects against erosion, floods, and severe storms and costs less to maintain than non-native gardens. It gives other landowners and governments a model for restoring property and reducing maintenance costs. 

The 4000-square-foot-plus area borders flood-prone Richland Creek, so Haywood Waterways Association (HWA) joined the project along with the WNC Climate Action Coalition (CAC) and the Western North Carolina Conference of the United Methodist Church (UMC). Five Conference churches are Creation Care Alliance congregations. 

Volunteers and leaders included women and UMC teenage girls as well as boys. The point person for Frog Level Brewing was Morgan Crisp, co-owner. To recruit volunteers, Caitlin Worsham, HWA project manager, coordinated with Jim Geenen, CAC youth conservation leader, and Matthew Blackburn, FUMC-Waynesville Youth Ministries director. Jacobs and Basham coached and monitored volunteers on-site. 

Worsham explained, “HWA was proud to partner with Frog Level, Spriggley’s, CAC, and UMC youth groups to improve the streambank on Richland Creek. We are thankful to the army of volunteers. Removing invasives and then planting natives create a more diverse ecosystem while also stabilizing the streambank. This will reduce pollution from entering Richland Creek.” Crisp agrees, saying “It’s been amazing to watch the garden begin to take root and witness the influx of butterflies, birds, and bees that are vital to supporting the ecosystem of our area.”  

Crisp’s enthusiasm is personal as well as professional. “For myself as a Cherokee, one of our core values is a sense of place which includes stewardship to the land. There is a strong connection between the land and cultural identity, and it is with great personal pleasure that this small plot of land could be re-purposed into something vital for our community.”

Leave a comment

2 comments

  • What a wonderfulllllll mission
    Have you read of the benefits to bee and hive
    of SHUNGITE ???

    All healthy and happy wishes to you all there

    Georgia
    Ontario/Canada

    posted by Geo

    Thursday, 09/22/2022

  • What a wonderfulllllll mission
    Have you read of the benefits to bee and hive
    of SHUNGITE ???

    All healthy and happy wishes to you all there

    Georgia
    Ontario/Canada

    posted by Geo

    Thursday, 09/22/2022

Smokey Mountain News Logo
SUPPORT THE SMOKY MOUNTAIN NEWS AND
INDEPENDENT, AWARD-WINNING JOURNALISM
Go to top
Payment Information

/

At our inception 20 years ago, we chose to be different. Unlike other news organizations, we made the decision to provide in-depth, regional reporting free to anyone who wanted access to it. We don’t plan to change that model. Support from our readers will help us maintain and strengthen the editorial independence that is crucial to our mission to help make Western North Carolina a better place to call home. If you are able, please support The Smoky Mountain News.

The Smoky Mountain News is a wholly private corporation. Reader contributions support the journalistic mission of SMN to remain independent. Your support of SMN does not constitute a charitable donation. If you have a question about contributing to SMN, please contact us.