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Supporting Beneficial Insects with Flowering Plants

Clarksville Research Center
9302 Portland Road
Clarksville, MI 48815

Description: The beneficial insects that provide valuable pest control and pollination services to farms and gardens require access to diverse sources of nectar and pollen to support their activities. MSU entomologists have been testing more than 55 species of Michigan native and other insect-supporting (i.e. insectary) plants to see which are most attractive to pollinators and natural enemies. Participants in this workshop will learn to identify key pollinators (managed and wild bees), and natural enemies of insect pests (predators and parasitoids), as well as learn about programs that can help them establish beneficial insect habitats on farms and other property. During field tours, participants will see which plants are best for attracting beneficial insects and hear recommendations for establishing and maintaining these insectary habitats. Speakers will also include representatives from MSU Plant Biology, USDA Natural Resource Conservation Service (NRCS), and Michigan Native Plant Producers Association.

Registration Information:  
Registration is open until July 23, 2016 with a fee of$20 to cover lunch and materials.
Cancellations after July 23, 2016 will be charged a $10 canecllation fee.


10 a.m.           Welcome and goals for the day. Doug Landis, MSU Entomology

10:15 a.m.      Natural enemy identification and habitat management. Dan Gibson, MSU Entomology

10:30 a.m.      Pollinator identification and habitat management. Logan Rowe, MSU Entomology

10:45 a.m.      Visit common garden field site and rotate among stations to learn about:

  • Natural enemy sampling, identification, and biology. Dan Gibson
  • Pollinator sampling, identification, and biology. Logan Rowe
  • Plant identification and biology. Michigan Native Plant Producers Association Members

12 - 1 p.m.      Lunch and interactive time (lunch is included in the cost of registration) 

  • Learn about programs to help landowners establish and maintain insectary habitat

1 p.m.             Visit established insectary plots.

  • Learn about insectary habitat establishment. Lars Brudvig, Anna Groves, MSU Department of Plant Biology
  • Impacts of insectary habitat on pollination. Rufus Isaacs, MSU Entomology

 2 p.m.            End

 Handouts: (included cost in registration) 

  • E-2973 Attracting Beneficial Insects with Native Flowering Plants.
  • E-2949 Identifying Natural Enemies in Crops and Landscapes. (pocket-sized field guide)
  • E-3282 Bees of the Great Lakes Region and Wildflowers to Support Them. (pocket-sized field guide)
  • 2015 Results of SARE Insectary Plant Project

Can't come to the workshop? Visit our website:

Download Workshop Flier

Online registration for Supporting Beneficial Insects with Insectary Plants is open.
The last date for online registration is July 23, 2016.
Online registration closes at 11:59 p.m. on the Registration End Date.

Register Online


Michigan State University is committed to providing equal opportunity for participation in all programs, services and activities. Accommodations for persons with disabilities may be requested by contacting the event contact two weeks prior to the start of the event. Requests received after this date will be honored whenever possible.

Contact Information

If further information is needed, please contact Doug Landis at 517-353-1829 or



Earlier Event: August 2
MSU Plant Trial Field Day
Later Event: August 2
Introducing RiverSafe LakeSafe