Abingdon woman explains why we should be grateful for pollinators this Earth Day

ABINGDON, Illinois – Teresa Sanford-Shipplett is heading to Springfield from Abingdon on Monday to break ground on a new pollinator field on the nearby fairgrounds.

But as she believes, to make the earth greener, all it takes is a bit of yellow.

“A pollinator is something that pollinates your plants,” explains Sanford-Shipplett.

Pollinators are essential this Earth Day and every day, especially beyond the Hedding Grade School playground – where Sanford-Shipplett started a school garden almost 20 years ago.

“It was just bare, it was kind of ugly,” Sanford-Shipplett remembers. “And I thought it wasn’t very pretty for the kids to look out to in their classrooms.”

Years later, the blossoming flowers and plants she grows attracts pollinators.

“They’re not just bees, there’s also butterflies, there’s also moths,” says Sanford-Shipplett.

And those insects many people try to sway away are a benefit for everyone and everything roaming the earth.

“Every third bite of food you eat is because a bee has pollinated it,” Sanford-Shipplett says.

After success with her garden, Sanford-Shipplett is helping plant another pollinator garden down in Springfield, along with a group she’s a part of called The Monarch Project.

“This introduces people to the fact that they are connected to agriculture,” Sanford-Shipplett says about the new field. “A lot of people just don’t understand that.”

Sanford-Shipplett reminds us that this Earth Day is a big deal for our planet.

“It’s Earth’s birthday,” Sanford-Shipplett comments.

It’s also a day to remember more than just once a year.  All it takes is some green and yellow.

“We need to take care of our earth, it’s very important not just today, but every day,” says Sanford-Shipplett.

Sanford-Shipplett will meet with dozens of others down state.  They plan to have the pollinator field in Springfield ready to go by this summer.

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