WESTOVER, W.Va. – The Monongalia County Beekeepers Association partnered with multiple organizations on the morning of June 4 to bring a pollinator garden to the intersection triangle in Westover.

Shawna Cross, a member of the Westover City Council, was looking for beautification projects throughout the city. She thought that bringing pollinator plants and towers would not only be good for the pollinators, but would bring attention to the community.

After partnering up with the City of Westover, the association was given permission to open that Saturday, re-doing the garden in the intersection triangle.

Starting at 9 a.m., multiple people from different organizations came together to help pick out the juniper shrubs and some weeds. This helped make room for the new flowers, plants, and pollinator hotels. The pollinator hotels are tall, made of brick and are used by pollinators to live in during winter.

According to Mike Lamp, president of Monongalia County Beekeepers Association, it is a known factor that large portions of pollinators die every year, and he is hoping this can help reverse that. The plants that are being planted are to promote native pollinators to come in.

He also talked about how these projects need promotion because pollinators are more than just honeybees. The West Virginia Pollinator Handbook says that they are also butterflies, beetles, ants, hummingbirds, etc.

While discussing his appreciation for those who have been helping, and how he felt about the day, Mike said, “it’s – it’s incredibly exciting to be apart of something like this. It seems, um, right along the lines of think global, act local, right? We have so many global issues, and this is one way for us to help the community, to um, overcome some of those larger things. So, it – it feels like a strong sense of community here.”

The association will be monitoring the garden over next year, to make sure it grows and thrives as pollinator garden. They are hoping to expand these projects throughout the city and county to get a “Bee City USA Designation.” Bee City USA said that “it is a program that recognizes, supports, and encourages pollinator conservation in cities, towns, and counties.”