Northern Arizona Pollinator Habitat Initiative Accomplished First Year Goals

The Northern Arizona Pollinator Habitat Initiative (NAZPHI) began in January, 2017 with big plans for their first year! They defined their mission as promoting the creation, protection, and registration of pollinator habitat across Northern Arizona and set multiple goals to accomplish their vision.

Their first goal was to create two more pollinator gardens in the community. They have officially established a garden at NAU’s student-run SNAIL garden, and with help from a APS grant, a garden on APS’s substation on E Pine Knoll Drive.

Their second goal for this year is to increase the number of registered pollinator gardens within the greater Flagstaff area by a factor of ten, all the while working to reverse the plight of pollinators. At the start of the year, only five gardens were registered at the Million Pollinator Garden Challenge and now, they’ve reached their goal of 50!

Keep the tally going! Register in three minutes today at!

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After securing start-up grants from both APS and NAU’s Green Fund, NAZPHI is happy to announce that they’ve just been awarded an Arizona Community Foundation grant to fund their director Tyler Linner’s part-time wages through summer 2018. This has made possible exciting new possibilities, including achieving their ultimate goal of creating a replicable Pollinator Regional Plan which includes important resources such as a pollinator commitment and a “Pollination Information Station” website that is now in early development.

NAZPHI has gotten involved in hands-on projects as well. On top of building several pollinator gardens here in Flagstaff, they’ve distributed native wildflower seed packets provided by the Flagstaff Arboretum to help community members attract pollinating friends to their own gardens. The NAU-led gridLESS micro-dwelling team will be debuting their pollinator-friendly sustainable mobile meeting space next February in Scottsdale. They are also discussing creating a pollinator corridor right in Flagstaff in cooperation with Terra BIRDS.

On the horizon NAZPHI is planning a pollinator related event in the summer of 2018. They are looking to include everything from expert speakers to hands-on workshops.

Wondering why everyone’s been talking about pollinators lately?

Pollinator insects, such as domesticated and native bees, butterflies and moths, play an essential role in the US food supply. Many commodity crops could not exist without them; in fact, insect pollination makes possible a third of our food! Therefore, threats to pollinators, such as poor nutrition, loss of forage lands, and pesticides threaten the entire food system.

Such threats contributed to devastating recent losses of commercial honey bee colonies and a dramatic 90% population loss of Monarch butterflies in the last 20 years. Given the breadth, severity, and persistence of pollinator losses, it is critical to expand local and regional efforts to help restore populations to healthy levels. Increasing the area and quality of pollinator habitats is a crucial step in solving several of these problems.

Keep up with NAZPHI on Facebook under “Northern Arizona Pollinator Habitat Initiative” or email us at to join our listserv.