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Working Lands for Pollinators Program

If you are a commercial farmer or rancher in the San Diego area who is interested in creating or increasing native pollinator habitat on your property, this program is for you!  We can offer technical assistance or funding to help you reach your goals.


Why are Pollinators Important? 

Pollinators play a keystone role in most ecosystems and are essential for almost a third of our food production. Despite their importance, pollinators are facing serious declines worldwide due to threats such as pesticides, climate change, habitat loss, invasive diseases, and pests. Bees, one of our most important pollinators, are among the many pollinators that are struggling. In the United States there are around 4,000 native bee species, at least 23% of which are in decline.

We can help pollinators by creating and restoring pollinator habitat areas. Ideally, a pollinator habitat is located in a pesticide-free area and near a water source, that includes shelter structures, nesting materials, host plants, and a mix of blooming and nectar plants that are available year-round. The good news is most of these elements are already in your area!

Providing a diverse mix of native blooming plants, shrubs, trees and grasses is the best way to support our pollinators. Native plants are especially beneficial for pollinator habitats because they have evolved specifically to survive our California climate and better support our native pollinators. Floral diversity also supports a variety of pollinator diets and extends the window of nectar and pollen availability.

A healthy abundance of pollinators not only supports the surrounding ecosystem but provides benefits for us as well. Globally, up to 75% of all flowering plant species and 35% of all food crops rely on a pollinator for reproduction.

To learn more about the benefits of hosting pollinator habitat on your commercial farm or ranch, check out our Pollinator Habitat Restoration on Working Lands guide below.



Eligibility Requirements

  • We service the areas within the Greater San Diego and Upper San Luis Rey jurisdictions. Those include the communities of the South Bay, mid-coastal and inland San Diego, unincorporated communities of East County and the mountains, and Anza Borrego. Before booking a visit, PLEASE insert your farm or ranch address into this map to ensure you are eligible.
  • Are you a commercial farm or ranch? This program is intended for business operations. 
  • Do you have native habitat near your working land? We like to connect corridors of existing habitat.
  • Are you willing to greatly reduce and/or completely stop the use of pesticides on your farm or ranch? We do not want to invite pollinators and other beneficial insects to a place that is unsafe for them.
  • Are you able to cover additional water costs to establish new habitat plantings? All new plantings will require irrigation for the first 1 to 3 years. Implementation funding is available to cover the costs of irrigation and site prep, but not the cost of water.
  • This program does not fund farmers or ranchers who want to start keeping European honey bees.

Our field team will set a time to come out and walk the property with you.  We then create a report for you including plant lists and project ideas based on your goals. If any project suggestions align with our implementation funding, we can discuss that option. 

To sign up for a free site visit, please fill out this short form to teach us about your land and goals.

**You are welcome to sign up for a site visit, but please note that we are taking a small break in scheduling site visits and will be available to see you in the Fall. **


    More Questions?

    Reach out to Outreach Coordinator, Codi Hale:




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