Rose Broughton, 5, picks out seed at the Canyonville Farmers’ Market on Wednesday.

At the Canyonville Farmers Market on Wednesday, flower seeds and educational facts sheets were handed out for a save the bees initiative. 

Amanda Pastoria, market manager, said, “I’ll hand them out at the Canyonville Farmers Market until they all have homes. Besides that, The Umpqua Valley Farmers Market handed out seeds to the kids last weekend with the Food Hero activity, and Umpqua Valley Farm To School has seeds too.”

Bees are extremely important for the environment. 

“Bees pollinate more than 70% of our food sources as well as other plants, not just on farms, but in the wild too, which helps maintain the vast biodiversity of nature,” Pastoria said. “Without bees, the plants that we rely on would have lower production and set fewer seeds, which would alter our ecosystems drastically.”

The flower seeds that were being handed out included sunflowers, hollyhocks, Johnny jump up violas, English daisies, Shasta daisies, painted daisies, purple coneflower echinacea and zinnias. Most of the flowers are perennial and will come back next year.

The flower seeds were donated by Oregon State University. 

“This year the Douglas County OSU Extension Office contacted me about free flower seed packets,” Pastoria said. “I took them up on the offer, and here we are, doing a ‘Save the Bees’ kids activity.”

There are other ways to help save bees as well, Pastoria explained. 

“We can do our part by not using chemical pesticides, fertilizers, and herbicides that kill bees and their habitats,” she said. “Use beneficial insects, like ladybugs and praying mantises, to keep away pests. Plant a garden, with flowers too. Don’t cut down massive amounts of trees, which bloom and provide pollen and nectar for the bees. Build bee boxes. Support your local beekeepers.”

There will be several workshops at the Canyonville Farmers’ Market for kids over the summer hosted by Umpqua Valley Farm to School. 

On June 28 there will be no-bae cookie making with Goodog Bakery out of Myrtle Creek. On July 14 there will be a lesson on bird digestion and pinecone bird feeders. On Aug. 4 there will be smoothie making with UC-Veg. On Aug. 18 there will be eco print scarf making. On Sept. 1 there will be a lesson on how to make a great salad. 

“All classes are funded through a grant from Umpqua Health Alliance,” Pastoria said. “Live Music is funded through the same grant and a grant from Douglas County Cultural Coalition.”

Whitney Broughton of Roseburg was enjoying the market with her daughter, Rose, on Wednesday. 

Broughton said, “This is our first time coming to the market, but we will be coming here a lot more.”

The market was started eight years ago and now typically has between 18 and 24 vendors. They are open from 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. every Wednesday. 

Its mission is, “To provide fresh local produce, handmade goods, and live music to the community while supporting local people and families. We believe in community, and that’s what we are building,” said Pastoria. “We are here for you. Come by and see the faces that grow your food.”

A sign featured at the Canyonville Farmers’ Market on Wednesday.

The Canyonville Farmers’ Market is located in the parking lot of Seven Feather’s on Wednesday.

Rose Broughton, 5, reads about bees on Wednesday.

Rose Broughton, 5, admires educational bee sheets on Wednesday.

A bee collecting pollen from lavender.

A bee enjoying lavender.

A bee clinging onto lavender.

A bee getting nectar from the flowers of a chive.