About

Bee Campus USA

Inver Hills joins more than 150 other cities and campuses across the country united in improving their landscapes for pollinators.

Making the world safer for pollinators, one campus at a time.

Inver Hills Community College is the first educational institution in Minnesota and the 83rd in the United States to be certified as an affiliate of the Bee Campus USA program, which is designed to marshal the strengths of educational campuses for the benefit of pollinators.

As a Bee Campus USA, Inver Hills is a proactive participant in a national movement of campuses committed to engaging in pollinator conservation. The college can contribute to affiliate network webinars that promote collaboration as well as teaching and learning opportunities.

As a Bee Campus USA, Inver Hills works to:

  • Safeguard and boost pollinators on campus and in the community
  • Protect and advance the environment
  • Promote sustainability through robust recycling programs
  • Improve eating habits
  • Support the economy
  • Collaborate to defend the survival of more than 200,000 pollinator species around the world
    • Pollinators are crucial to the planet's complex food web
    • More than 150 food crops in the U.S. depend on pollinators
  • Raise community awareness on the following pollinator-related topics:
    • Dangers non-native invasive plants bring to local ecosystems
    • Least toxic ways to confront landscaping pest problems
    • Climate change
    • Sustainability
    • Environmental protection
    • Greener living
    • Complexity of the modern food industry global collective
    • Augmenting local food production through expanded pollination
    • Enhancing local plant nursery markets via increased demand for native, pollinator-friendly plants

Meet Our Mascot

Introducing Bo the Bee: Our New Inver Hills Community College Mascot.

 

Inver Hills Bees

More About Bee USA

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Community Garden

Due to construction, the community garden will be unavailable in 2024. We know this is unfortunate for our garden plot users. While we cannot offer space this year, we still believe gardening is an excellent way to promote self-care and offer a sense of purpose in times of stress. Even the smallest yards can make for great garden beds. We encourage you to look at the ‘useful links’ and ‘native plant resources’ on our website to get started at home. Please check back for updates in 2025.

Whether you seek a quiet place to enjoy the sunshine and smell the flowers, or you want some outdoor exercise and camaraderie, our garden is open to you! We also offer plots to gardeners.

Our beautiful garden and orchard is located on the Inver Hills campus, behind Heritage Hall & the Science Building.

Follow us on Facebook!

Pollinator Events

Due to construction, the community garden is unavailable in 2024. However, there are still plenty of opportunities for you to get involved and help your local pollinators.

We will plan to have planting events in the upcoming spring and summer seasons. Gardening is an excellent way to promote self-care and offer a sense of purpose in times of stress. The hope is to have dates that we can offer supplies in which individuals can work on our designated pollinator gardens.

Inver Hills Community College Bee’s Knees Committee is launching a Pollinator Patio Project. Join us for one of our planting or weeding days. Check out all of Bee’s Knees upcoming 2024 activities below.

Winter Seeding Activity

Date: Friday, April 5

Time: 11 a.m. to 1 p.m

Location: Pollinator Patio, between college center and library. (Rain site: cafeteria)

Activity: Please bring any clean plastic containers such as clamshell packaging, large yogurt or sour cream containers, or disposable “Tupperware” type storage containers for the initial seed planting and germination. If you have any of these, please save them and drop them off outside CC210 before April 5, or bring them to the event. There is no limit to how many containers you can donate as we are planning on planting hundreds of seeds.

At the event, we will fill these containers with seeds and soil. After we’ve finished filling the containers, they will be moved to behind activities building. These will sit outside to germinate for roughly one month. Then we will host a follow-up event May 15th to transplant the plants in the containers to new pollinator planters on the main mall of campus.

To sign up, email rmarzahn@inverhills.edu.

Annual Research Conference Pollinators Presentation

Date: Thursday, April 18th

Time: 4 p.m to 5 p.m.

Location: Fine Arts Building

Activity: Have you wondered about the role pollinators play in producing your favorite foods? Are they fine, or in decline? In this presentation, you will learn about pollinator importance, diversity, and conservation across Minnesota and North America. We will discuss four actions you can take to support pollinator health and diversity.

No need to sign up. This event is open to the public.

Spring Pollinator Planters Activity

Date: Wednesday, May 15

Time: 2 p.m. to 4 p.m

Location: Pollinator Patio, between college center and library.

Activity: Now that our winter seedlings have germinated, we will transplant them into their new pollinator planter boxes. Meet at the pollinator patio at 2 p.m. on Wednesday, May 15th. We will move the germinated plants into their summer home in the pollinator planting boxes. Thanks to facilitates, we have three new cedar boxes, 50” x 20” x17” to fill with packing peanuts, soil, and our newly germinated seedlings. Wear closed suited for outdoor gardening. Bring gloves and small hand tools if you have them. We will have some supplies available.

This is part two, of our three-part planting initiative in 2024. With the community garden out of commission, we have an alternative, three-part plan to create pollinator-friendly spaces.

  1. Winter Seeding Activity (April 5)
  2. Spring Pollinator Planting Pot Activity (May 15)
  3. Fall Pollinator Patio Activity (TBD)

To sign up, email rmarzahn@inverhills.edu.

Fall Pollinator Patio Activity

Date: TBD

Time: TBD

Location: Pollinator Patio, between college center and library.

Activity: Transplanting the plants from the pollinator planters into the ground of the Pollinator Patio. More information will be available soon. Keep checking back.

What is Bee USA?

Bee Campus USA fosters ongoing dialogue to raise awareness of the role pollinators play in our communities and what each of us can do to provide them with healthy habitat.

The Bee Campus USA program endorses a set of commitments, defined in an application, for creating sustainable habitats for pollinators, which are vital to feeding the planet.

College students, faculty, administrators, and staff have long been among the nation's most stalwart champions for sustainable environmental practices. That's why our aim is for Bee Campus USA to become a national movement.

Bee Campus USA is a Xerces Society initiative. The Xerces Society is an international nonprofit organization that protects the planet by conserving insects and other invertebrates and their habitats. The society takes its name from the Xerces blue butterflyGlaucopsyche xerces, the first butterfly known to go extinct in North America as a result of human activities.

Recycling at Inver Hills

We are committed to sustainability and greatly appreciate everyone's help as we move forward. Learn more about our recycling efforts.

Bee's Knees Committee

The Bee's Knees Committee at Inver Hills is a cross-departmental working group that meets once a month. Members of The Bee's Knees Committee are dedicated to reviewing the requirements of Bee Campus USA certification and creating a campus-wide habitat plan.

The Bee's Knees Committee at Inver Hills takes pride in the college’s commitment to minimizing hazards to pollinators by using nearly no neonicotinoid pesticides, glyphosate herbicide or other potentially dangerous pesticides.

Committee members are excited about the opportunities for student research, service-learning and/or community-based learning projects, connecting with area businesses, creating sustainability connections in academic program curricula, and establishing designated pollinator gardens on campus. Inviting a variety of environmental stewardship experts to campus as presenters and speakers is also in the works.

Get Involved

Students, faculty, staff, and community members are invited to join the Bee's Knees committee and help with our efforts to make Inver Hills a great place for pollinators.

Bee the change you want to see in the world!

Bee's Knees Committee Members

Co-Chairs: Rachel Marzahn & Scott Klaehn

Ben Feldkamp

Debbie Wallen

Erica Kantola

Heather Brient-Johnson

Julie Nelson

Kellyn Redlin

Lydia DeGrross

Shannon Williams

Native Plant Suppliers

Minnesota Department of Natural Resources

Central Minnesota Native Plant Supplier

Committee Favorite Supplier

Inver Grove Heights Local Supplier – Gertens

Prairie Moon

Morning Sky Greenery

Bailey Nurseries

Prairie Restoration

Naturally Wildflowers

Wisconsin Options

Dragonfly Gardens is a retail outlet of propagated wetland, woodland, and prairie plants and seeds, both native and non-native. They also offer consultation services and site planning with an emphasis on shoreline restoration. Amery address: 491 State Hwy 46, Amery, WI 54001 | Phone: (715) 268-7660 Turtle Lake address: 1637 1-3/4 Street, State Hwy 63, Turtle Lake, WI | Phone: (715) 986-2211 Email: info@dragonflygardens.net| Web: www.dragonflygardens.net

Kinnickinnic Natives LLC specializes in growing lady’s slippers and local ecotype prairie, woodland, and savanna species from Pierce and St. Croix Counties in Wisconsin and Washington County in Minnesota. Address: 235 State Road 65, River Falls, WI 54022 | Phone: (715) 222-6910 | Email: kinninatives@gmail.com or Wayne, whuhnke@disshup.us | Web: www.kinninatives.com

Lupine Gardens, LLC is a chemical free native plant nursery that sells both plants and seeds. They sell native plants in addition to non-native plants, medicinal plants, vegetables and heirloom plants. They offer design and installation of native landscapes for private projects, government grant work, etc. Address: 880 155th Street, Amery, WI 54001 | Phone: (715) 222-6669 Email: lupinegardens@yahoo.com Web: www.lupinegardens.com

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