Help Us Reach the Million Pollinator Garden Challenge!

CC BY 2.0. Sami Grover

Every little flower helps. Especially when there's a lot of us planting them.

I've been in the process of making our yard more pollinator friendly, and was delighted this year to see what I believe to be our first monarch butterfly in the garden. (It may have been a viceroy. I do get confused.) There's something immensely powerful about taking steps to beautify your own immediate surroundings, and watching how nature responds.

But such steps can also feel futile, especially when weighed against the scale of the ecological disruption and loss of pollinators we are living through.

This is where the power of collective individual action comes through. In the same way as #2MinuteBeachClean has helped us lone litter pickers to realize we're not really alone, the National Pollinator Garden Network's Million Pollinator Garden Challenge aims to register and visualize—you guessed it—one million pollinator-friendly garden sites, ranging from large farms and businesses to private yards and even window boxes.

When viewed together, they offer a pretty powerful impression of what we can do if we all do our part:

Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Map

So far, there are 695,565 sites registered, but organizers are hoping for a final push to get to the magic one million mark by the time National Pollinator Week rolls around on June 18-24. So go ahead—sign up. It takes a few minutes and really helps us all to get a better picture of how each of us, doing our bit, can add up to something that's much bigger than the sum of its parts.