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Honeybees and native pollinators thrive around flowering plants and trees

Talk of Iowa, hosted by Charity Nebbe

A bee specialist shares the work of hobby beekeepers to create a healthy habitat for pollinators and the garden features that can attract them.

Rising concern of colony collapse has created more interest in beekeeping. Bee specialist Randall Cass joins horticulturists Aaron Steil and Talk of Iowa host Charity Nebbe to share the work bees and their keepers do. Experts share the importance of mentorship communities in the beekeeping world, how pesticides used in Iowa agriculture impact hives and the plants that can sustain pollinators.

They also answer listener questions about growing tomatoes, harvesting milkweed pods, and more.


  • Randall Cass, Iowa State Extension bee specialist
  • Aaron Steil, ISU Extension consumer horticulture specialist
Talk of Iowa Hort DayHorticultureBees
Charity Nebbe is the host of IPR's Talk of Iowa
Samantha McIntosh is a talk show producer at Iowa Public Radio. Prior to IPR, Samantha worked as a reporter for radio stations in southeast and west central Iowa under M&H Broadcasting, and before that she was a weekend music host for GO 96.3 in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
Aaron Steil is a Consumer Horticulture Specialist with ISU Extension and Outreach. Aaron contributes his expertise to the Garden Variety podcast and newsletter and to Talk of Iowa's Horticulture Day program.
Natalie Dunlap is a rising junior at the University of Iowa majoring in journalism and minoring in gender, women's & sexuality studies. She is from Iowa City and in her free time enjoys getting coffee and reading downtown with friends.