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All Pollinators Content

aerial view of South Dakota farm and surrounding land


During the growing season, SDSU Extension provides weekly production recommendations.

a picture large purple flowers with yellow centers surrounded by dead leaves and grey landscaping rocks.

Landscaping Best Practices for Pollinators and Beyond

Our yards are all part of a greater ecosystem. By incorporating some best practices into your landscaping routine, your yard can develop healthier soil, support more pollinators, and reduce the need for pest control.

A large orange butterfly with white spots feeding on a pale pink flower in a green grassy area.

Planting for Specialist Butterflies

Monarchs are not the only specialist pollinators in South Dakota. Many other butterflies also require a specific plant or family of plants to lay eggs on. Learn about some important host plants to help specialist butterflies in your yard!

A medium orange and black butterfly resting with its wings open on small green leaves in a grassy area.

Generalist Host Plants in South Dakota

Many butterflies and moths are generalists, meaning that their larva can use a variety of host plants as food. Learn about some of the best host plants you can grow in your yard to support butterflies, moths, and everything that relies on them!

Adult red earthworm, cabbage looper, and brown-belted bumble bee.

The Seen and Unseen World of Invertebrates and Vegetables: The good, the bad, and the cute

The seen and unseen worlds of invertebrates in our gardens offer an opportunity to understand how each organism plays a crucial role in the balance of our environment, whether they are good, bad, or even cute.

Green bee on yellow flower.

Time to Spray Sunflowers: Don’t Forget About the Pollinators

As sunflowers in South Dakota begin to reach the flowering stages, it is important to remember that, in addition to insect pests, there are also pollinators visiting these flowers.

A black and yellow striped fly with large red eyes resting on a flower. The fly is covered in yellow pollen.

It’s a Bee! It’s a Wasp! No, It’s a Hover Fly!

Many types of insects are responsible for some degree of pollination in landscapes. In this article, we will focus on the syrphid fly as both an important pollinator and a beneficial insect predator.

Left: Adult honey bee. Right: Bicolored striped-sweat bee

Beneficial Pollinators: Honey Bees and Bicolored Striped-Sweat Bee

With temperatures increasing in South Dakota, expect to see an increase of beneficial pollinators searching for blooming plants. Learn about two important pollinators, the honey bee and the native bicolored striped-sweat bee.

A tiger swallowtail drinking nectar from a purple blazing star flower.

Five Range Management Principles: #3 Ecosystem Biodiversity

Milkweed can help make rangelands a better environment for both cattle and neighboring plants and animals by having a shielding effect on companion plants, preventing erosion and accelerating the decomposition process, whole also providing nectar, habitat and organic material for ecosystem services.

Four common, native milkweed plants: butterfly weed, swamp milkweed, common milkweed and whorled milkweed.

Garden-friendly Milkweeds to Plant in South Dakota

Are you looking to add native plants to your home garden this season? Consider expanding your garden palette with milkweed species that are native to South Dakota.