Crops, Weeds, And Pollinators

The interactions between plants and pollinators are many and complex. The global number of described Angiosperm plants – those that flower and produce seed – is thought to be over 250 000. The transfer of pollen and subsequent fertilization of the plant is a fundamental necessity in the reproduction of these species, and while some plants can self-pollinate, the majority are reliant on, or experience greater reproductive rates through, cross-pollination.

This publication looks at managing agricultural systems through an ecological approach, building upon beneficial biological interactions and finding positive synergies between pollination and weed management.

These two aspects of agriculture consist of a multitude of interactions, both beneficial and harmful for the farmer and agriculture in general. If the practices applied to effectively control weeds can also benefit pollinators, there may be multiple benefits.

As part of FAO ’s “Global Action on Pollination Services for Sustainable Agriculture”, this publication was prepared in collaboration with experts to develop sound advice aimed for a wide range of countries and contexts to sustainably promote the twin goals of weed and pollinator management.

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