Instead of human visitors, the Rice Museum of Rocks & Minerals in Hillsboro is hoping for some new pollinators to show up on the grounds.
The museum recently completed a pollinator grant project with the help of the Tualatin Soil & Water Conversation District, according to the museum's website. The project was funded by the Tualatin Watershed Improvement Grant program.
This spring, the museum's event planning and maintenance team planted about 40 different rose bushes and 35 lavender plants encircling the public area towards the back of the property.
"The $1,200 grant provided much-needed pollination sources for local bees and butterflies, as well as added color and variability to the landscape," said the museum.
With the addition of 75 pollination sources, staff expect an immediate boost to help various honeybee populations.
"In time, the back area should be an even more attractive setting for spring weddings," said Vicki Botieff, the museum's events coordinator.
But one concern the museum has is the resurgent population of black-tailed deer. With the museum closed due to COVID-19 safety precautions, local deer have been much more visible this spring.
"Without a full yard of school children eating lunch, the quiet grounds have invited more local wildlife in general," added the announcement. "The deer can be voracious rose bush consumers, but hopefully the bushes will survive and thrive. So far, all of the new plantings persist, but many have been severely 'pruned' by the deer."
You count on us to stay informed and we depend on you to fund our efforts. Quality local journalism takes time and money. Please support us to protect the future of community journalism.