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Lansing’s R.E. Olds Transportation Museum home to new pollinator garden

A woman wearing a t-shirt and garden gloves is kneeling in a garden bed surrounded by plants in pots
Melorie Begay
Cathy LaValley was one of several volunteers who helped plant the Pollinator Garden outside R.E. Olds Transportation Museum in Lansing on May 20. LaValley is a Rotary Club member from Battle Creek, MI.

Lansing’s R.E. Olds Transportation Museum has a new pollinator garden planted by Rotary Club members in Mid-Michigan.

The project is part of MotorCities’ Pollinator Pledge, where organizations and businesses commit to supporting and restoring habitats for pollinators like butterflies and bees.

The museum donated the land outside its building near Lansing's downtown River Trail. Volunteers will help care for the garden.

Georgiana Gormley is with the Rotary Club of Hastings. She said one of the goals of the garden is to educate the public. Two signs with information about the project are posted next to it.

“People will stop by, and each time they do they’re going to learn something. And hopefully, it will also encourage them to do it themselves,” Gormley said. “You’d be amazed at how interested the public is in this. They’re really curious and hungry for information. They want to do something to help.”

Volunteers have planted about 180 native plants including Bergamot, Blazing Star and Little Bluestem flowers in a bed that's about 300 square feet.

Michelle Skedgell is with the Pierce Cedar Creek Institute, an environmental education nonprofit in Barry County. The plants were grown at the institute before arriving in Lansing.

“Pollinator gardens are planted with native plants, and native plants support the bees and insects and wasps and birds that pollinate not only other flowers, but 75% of the food that we eat depends on the pollinators,” she said.

Both Gormley and Skedgell said they'd like visitors to take it upon themselves to help pollinators as well. The garden is open to the public.

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