Steve Frank on PolliNation with Andony Melathopoulos

Dr. Steve Frank is an entomologist who recognizes that urban trees provide a lot of services back to people living in cities. Trees also provide a lot resources to pollinating insects as well. Given the importance of trees to broad ecological systems, Dr. Frank looks for practical and innovative ways to preserving tree health. His lab also studies how the urban heat island effect increases insect pest abundance and damage on urban trees and the congruence between urban and global warming to determine if cities could serve as canaries in the coal mine of climate change to predict pest outbreaks in natural forests.

Listen in to learn about how urban environments affect pollinators, what homeowners and civil planners can do to improve them, and which plants and trees are best for the city.

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“People can even help their own local micro-habitat by shading their driveway and their house and things like that, which saves you energy to boot.“ – Steve Frank

Show Notes:

  • How urbanization affects pollinators and their habitats
  • What you can do to help pollinators in your urban community
  • How cities can design their spaces to better suit their natural landscape and it’s pollinators
  • How Steve uses “habitat complexity” to better urban landscapes
  • Why stressed plants can produce many problems for pollinators
  • Steve’s recommendations on plants for pollinators at your home
  • How Steve finds his favorite books

“You have a master gardener in your neighborhood who’s really driving a community garden or something like that. That comes and goes, but the trees will still be there.“ – Steve Frank

Links Mentioned:

2 thoughts on “30 Steve Frank – Healthy Trees, Healthy Pollinators

  1. I have listened to the whole media but still, I want to know the things in detail for improving the pollinators and reducing the effect of urban environment on them. I have also visited the website of Steve labs.

  2. Thanks for your comment. I think’s Steve’s key point is that trees play an important role in moderating temperatures in cities and that these moderated temperatures are important for bee biodiversity. But trees are under siege from invasive pests, so you will have to manage them to make sure they stay healthy. For more detailed tips on managing urban habitat for pollinators I would recommend the episode with Dr. Dave Smitley and their wonderful publication Protecting and Enhancing Pollinators in Urban Landscapes (a PNW version of this publication is currently being assembled).
    If you have any specific questions let us know – we are planning a question and answer show in the new year.


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