Restoration of Highway Roadsides

Thank you for volunteering to support Wisconsin Pollinators in our efforts to get the Wisconsin Department of Transportation(DOT) to change their practice of planting non-native grasses along Wisconsin roadways.

Today, bees face many environmental hazards because of loss of habitat and pesticide use - roadways would extend their habitat and be pesticide free.

Send this letter today to the DOT and let your voice be heard on DOT construction projects. Although the project plans currently include the planting of pollinator-friendly plants along portions of the roadways, current budget discussions have included cutting that portion of the project. We need your help.

Please enter your name and address (we do not retain ANY personal information) and click SEND and we will forward your letter to the project team: Steve Theisen, Craig Pring, Derek Potter and Steve Marshall.

Please contact Wisconsin Pollinators if you have any questions or need further information

Enter Your Name and Address
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To:      Wisconsin Department of Transportation

Subject:     Restoration of Wisconsin Roadsides

Today, native pollinators face many environmental risks because of loss of habitat and pesticide use – planting native plants along roadways would extend their habitat and be pesticide free. Wisconsin roadsides form one of the most extensive networks of linear habitats and often provide the only natural or semi-natural habitat allowing pollinators to move through both urban and rural areas.

The decline of pollinator populations has broad and potentially long-term consequences for food security, our economy and biodiversity, the DOT has a responsibility to help with pollinator conservation. Roadsides can support a diversity of flowers and have reduced exposure to pesticides. In addition, these areas are rarely disturbed to the same degree as nearby farms and gardens. Roadsides can serve as a place for pollinators to refuel, reproduce and over-winter.

Native plants along roadsides stabilize soils, slowing the onslaught of non-native weeds, and improving water quality by decreasing water run-off. Because native plants are best adapted to native soils, they are more tolerant of drought and heat. Finally these plants improve roadside aesthetics and provide a connection to our natural heritage.

I want to express my concern about the use of roadside plantings of non-native grasses and encourage the use of pollinator-friendly plants where ever feasible.