Many of us are aware that the smallest creatures are the ones that are the front lines of a changing climate and we especially know how important pollinators are for the health and future survival of the people and the planet.

Last week the acclaimed filmmaker, Louie Schwartzberg and his crew visited the urban homestead to take some up close and personal shots of how pollinators are vital for our future food supply.

Hidden Beauty is the third installment of upcoming series of stunning wildlife feature films.

Look for Hidden Beauty: release Earth Day 2011

Hidden Beauty A Love Story that Feeds the Earth (2011)

In this film, nature is ready for its close-up… a very close-up, as exacting macro photography takes us to the realm of flowers and their pollinators. Acclaimed filmmaker Louie Schwartzberg introduces us to a bat, a hummingbird, a butterfly and a bumblebee, demonstrating their intricate interdependence and how life on earth depends on the success of these determined, diminutive creatures. (via IMDB)

The crew was here for most of the day taking shots of the garden, flowers, vegetables, bees (and even our goats though I don’t quite actually know how Blackberry fits in pollinator theme but that’s a whole ‘nother story…) 😉

While the crew was here we spotted our bees, of course, wild blue and orchard mason bees, a couple species of wasps, a big black carpenter bee, hummingbirds, swallow tail butter fly, painted lady butter fly, white and blue little butterflies – it was if they knew the camera crew was coming!   Kidding aside, this goes to show you how important it is that we attract and welcome these pollinators into our gardens.

It will be interesting to see what shots, if any, make it into the documentary. Either way this is an important film that will shine light on these beautiful and yet important creatures who connect the web of all life on this planet, our green earth.

What are you doing to attact more beneficials and pollinators into your garden? Care to share?


  1. Seren Dippity says:

    I didn’t do much this year in the way of flowers and things to attract the pollinators. I spent most of my energy focusing on getting my veggie beds started and my fruit trees planted. But this is an area that definitely needs attention here. I really think I had lower production on many veggies than I could have because of lack of pollination. I resorted to hand pollination on some squash. If all the blooms on my tomatoes and cucumber vines had actually set fruit I would have had an abundance!
    I did let many of my herbs bloom early for the sake of the butterflies and bees: cilantro, parsley, mint, basil, sage and dill. I had planted way more than I could use anyway. This winter I will be creating new beds specifically for flowers to attract pollinators. AND I’ve begun reading up on bee keeping. Not sure if I’m brave enough for that (yet!) but I’m tempted.

    Seren Dippity
    Dallas, TX

  2. Chicago Mike says:

    Making sure there are plenty of squash (number and variety) for my squash bees.

  3. Stacy says:

    I recently discovered that many native species of bees here in CA are ground dwelling and require bare dirt for their nests – the lack of water for my lawn has resulted in a wide variety of “bee habitat” options not previously seen on my property. ;P

    My vermicomposting bin was also recently colonized by Black Soldier Fly Larva – while not pollinators they are beneficial in the composting world, working faster and more efficiently than worms on kitchen scraps (including meat and dairy! – though they dislike grasses and high cellulose bits) and providing an easy source of protein for fowl or fish. Now I just need to find someone local enough to hand grubs off to on a regular basis…

    Otherwise, I’m trying to keep my plants adequately hydrated to keep blooms going and pollinators fed and happy.

  4. Alice says:

    Oh how I wish you were here. I just found a swarm of wild honey bees in my greenhouse. They are living in the smoker. I do not know how to capture them or how to care for them. Sure would like to know and have the honey.

  5. bess says:

    gosh, i haven’t thought about how. we seem to have a total abundance of butterflies and bees here tho. i had planted bee bush and what not, was planting tons of wild flowers along the garden too, but my kittens seem to be too playful not to trample everything. who knew kittens were so destructive. but in general our lawn is not very much mowed and full of clover dandelion and purple this and that, fields of forget me nots, all the trees blossom and lilac and honesuckle bush. maybe it’s what i am not doing that is making them come. yes, i guess what i am not doing is what i am doing. that’s my answer. 🙂
    ps. i was going to do bees but we have a real intense bear reality here and my neighbors are trying to encourage me to think about how relentless they can become if they find something they wish to eat…they even tried to get onto someone’s porch roof where he put his hives. wow. i feel a bit intimidated by that thought.

  6. Val says:

    LOTS of flowers from spring till fall (perrenials) 2 old apple trees and a crabapple, I was a bit concerned that the bees have been scarce this year as the catmint did not have its usual clusters of bees all over it and now they are showing up in droves. The russian sage is an absolute dance hall of bees. Honey bees, bumblebees and I witnessed a wasp dining on a cabbage looper as well as a big fat bumblebee snoozing in a squash blossom yesterday. Milkweed showed up a few years back and most in the neighborhood spray it and kill it, I leave it for the swallowtails, plus it has an incredible jasmine type fragrance. I would like to give beekeeping a hand but admittedly I am a bit intimidated by them.
    Congrats on the film opportunity!!!

  7. Joleen says:

    Good Morning Anais,
    I live in a city condo in Salt Lake City (but my heart and imagination is on the farm and someday my dream will come true and I’ll be on the land). I planted many pots of flowers and vegetables on my balcony this summer and lots of bees come to visit every day. One day a giant bumble bee got in my house when my three little grandchildren happened to be spending the day with me. Of course, they were all frightened of the bee but my son caught it in a glass and the children got to look at her and we had an opportunity to have a nice discussion about how bees help us and then we let her go outside. More important, it was a beautiful opportunity to teach the children to be humane with even the smallest creatures and put them back outside in ‘their’ home – not hurt them. Every time the kids are at my house now, they talk about the bee who came in to visit and how uncle Alex helped her go back outside where she was safe.
    Just another quick thought about small creatures. I alwsys look forward to the return of the crickets at night here in Salt Lake City. Their sound alerts us that Fall is close. They always start singing about the last week of August. This year, I heard the first ones already. I think the world environmental changes are absolutely confusing all.

  8. David S says:

    Alice Says:
    July 27th, 2009 at 11:32 pm
    Oh how I wish you were here. I just found a swarm of wild honey bees in my greenhouse. They are living in the smoker. I do not know how to capture them or how to care for them. Sure would like to know and have the honey.

    Hello Alice,

    What state & city are you in? Join Yahoo Groups Organic Beekeepers & more than likely they have someone near you to help you cut out or trap out the bees:


    Cheers, David S. in San Gabriel Valley, southern Calif.

  9. Mary Hysong says:

    Wow DISNEY?! You guys rock! that is soooo cool.

    Pollinators, though I no longer keep bees myself, there are loads of them around, honey bees, several kinds of bumbles, some sorts of small wild ones, hover flies, along with humming birds, moths and butterflies.

    I have a narrow strip around part of the front yard and a bed along the driveway, all planted to wild flowers, corn poppies and cilantro this year. Right now we have lots of sunflowers, hollyhocks, and cosmos plus beans, squash and cucumbers. Oh, nearly forgot; Lemon gem marigolds, basil, bergamot and other herbs flowering here and there around the garden.

    Also I had planted some buckwheat and let that bloom too.

  10. mary says:

    WE HAVE noticed a greater population of bees, wasps, mantis, dragon flies, soldier flies, butterflies, hummingbirds etc. this spring and summer. I planted more herbs [including borage] this year – maybe that is part of the increase(?). It is wonderful to have the winged beauty all over the yard. It makes the garden feel like just a majestic place!

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