Apply for Free Seed! Seeds for Bees program enrollment is now open in California and applications will be accepted until August 31st. Each year, we aim to plant more cover crop that is mutually beneficial for both growers and beekeepers. The 2022-2023 crop year brought challenges for beekeepers and growers as historic rains complicated the transport of bees and orchard management. These rains also highlighted one of the benefits of cover crops: water management. Established plantings were visibly helpful in abating standing water and reducing erosion.
The challenges that growers and beekeepers are facing remain diverse. Project Apis m. is stressing cover crops’ important economic and agronomic niche amidst these challenges.
NEW THIS YEAR: Seeds for Bees is offering more money for free seed for first- and second-year participants; $2500 for first-year participants and $1500 for second-year participants.
ALSO NEW: To expand our impact beyond the orchard, Seeds for Bees is offering a mix designed for beekeepers who have bee yards in California beekeepers are encouraged to apply.
LASTING VALUE: Because Seeds for Bees is a nonprofit, buys seed in high volumes, and pays for shipping, growers of honey bee-pollinated crops in California can capitalize on pricing discounts through the program, even after their subsidized years.
Stetcyn Maldonado is the new face of Seeds for Bees this year. Bringing a background in orchard management, a master's degree in agriculture education, and as a licensed PCA and CCA, Stetcyn is well positioned to help growers get started and continue with cover crops. About this year’s program, Stetcyn said, “I am excited to work with California's hard working and dedicated farmers. Project Apis m. has a long-standing history of quality and finding solutions to today’s problems. I am honored to do my part in continuing this work in building a stronger more resilient agriculture in our great state.”
Download the press release HERE.and help us get the word out to California growers about this opportunity!