Pollinator Partnership and NRCS Ohio

Lara Roketenetz, NRCS Pollinator Liaison Ohio

Lara has a Master’s in Biology from John Carroll University and a Ph.D. in Integrated Bioscience from The University of Akron. In addition to being Pollinator Partnership’s Ohio NRCS Pollinator Liaison & Project Wingspan State Coordinator, Lara is also the manager for the University of Akron Field Station, the outdoor living laboratory for the UA Biology Department. Her primary duties at the Field Station include mission fulfillment of scientific research, education, and community outreach. As a result of her professional and educational background, Lara understands the importance of connecting people to nature in order to inspire stewardship and community action, experience that she’s excited to bring to this partnership with NRCS. Some of the goals Lara will be working toward as the NRCS Liaison in Ohio include promoting and developing additional pollinator habitat, conducting state-wide trainings on pollinators and habitat for both landowners and SWCD/NRCS staff, and developing new technical materials particularly for urban agriculture. For further inquiries about her work with NRCS, you can reach Lara via email.

Help us reach our goal to enhance, create, and restore native habitats to support monarchs and other pollinators in Ohio!

Financial and Technical Assistance Contacts

USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS)NRCS helps Ohio producers conserve our valuable natural resources. We provide services to all private landowners who are interested in restoring and enhancing our sprawling landscape through a unique partnership with landowners, conservation districts, state and local governments, and rural and urban citizens. Our locally-based NRCS staff works directly with farmers, ranchers, foresters and others, to provide technical and financial conservation assistance.

USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA) - FSA provides a financial safety net to America’s farmers and ranchers, while at the same time protecting natural resources, and enhancing food security.

Ohio Department of Natural Resources Department of Natural Resources Private Lands Biologist - Find your local Private Lands Biologist (PLB) for free technical assistance from ODNR staff.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service - Partners for Fish and Wildlife - The Partners for Fish and Wildlife Program provides technical and financial assistance to private landowners interested in restoring and enhancing wildlife habitat on their land. Emphasis goes to projects with the potential to provide habitat for rare, threatened and endangered species; migratory birds and fish; and at-risk species.

Pheasants Forever/Quail Forever Farm Bill Biologists - In partnership with NRCS, Pheasants Forever employs field biologists throughout the state to provide free technical assistance. Our field biologist program is designed to assist farmers, landowners and the general public about the economic benefits of conservation programs, as well as delivering habitat programs that benefit pollinators and other wildlife. We call it the "One Stop Shop" for anything conservation and wildlife related on private and public lands.

Conservation District - The purpose and mission of The Ohio Federation of Soil and Water Conservation Districts is to support the work of Ohio’s 88 Soil and Water Conservation Districts who for 75 years have been providing locally-driven solutions to natural resource concerns at both the rural and urban settings of the SWCD’s in various capacities.

Incentive and Cost-Share Programs

NRCS- EQIP - NRCS is offering support for related practices through the Environmental Quality Incentive Program (EQIP) to establish monarch habitat.

NRCS - CSP - NRCS is offering support for related enhancements through the Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP) to establish monarch habitat.

Conservation Innovation Grants (CIG) - Conservation Innovation Grants (CIG) are competitive grants that stimulate the development and adoption of innovative conservation approaches and technologies in conjunction with agricultural production. CIG uses Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP) funds to award competitive grants to non-Federal governmental or nongovernmental organizations, American Indian Tribes, or individuals. Producers involved in CIG funded projects must be EQIP eligible.

FSA - CRP - The Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) pays a yearly rental payment in exchange for farmers removing environmentally sensitive land from agricultural production and planting species that will improve environmental quality.

FSA-CREP - In exchange for removing environmentally sensitive land from production and establishing permanent resource conserving plant species, farmers and ranchers are paid an annual rental rate along with other federal and non-federal incentives as specified in each CREP agreement. Participation is voluntary, and the contract period is typically 10-15 years.

FWS - Partners for Fish and Wildlife - The Partners for Fish and Wildlife Program provides technical and financial assistance to private landowners interested in restoring and enhancing wildlife habitat on their land. Emphasis goes to projects with the potential to provide habitat for rare, threatened and endangered species; migratory birds and fish; and at-risk species. Projects are custom-designed and tailored to meet landowners’ needs and objectives.

Informational Resources

Ohio Pollinator Habitat Initiative

NRCS Pollinator Resources

NRCS Conservation Planning in Ohio

Monarch Joint Venture

NRCS Monarch Butterfly

Great Lakes Pollinator Resource Center

The Ohio State University Bee Lab

Ohio State University College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences

Monarch Conservation Implementation Plan

Mid-American Monarch Conservation Strategy

Monarch Butterfly Conservation on Working Lands

Bee Friendly Farming (BFF) - a certification program from Pollinator Partnership that provides guidelines for farmers and growers to help protect, preserve and promote pollinator health on their lands.

Pollinator and Habitat Videos, Webinars, Podcasts

Our Future Flies With Pollinators with Lara Roketenetz | CRWP Speaker Series - YouTube

Backyard Botanicals: Integrated Pest Management with Dr. Lara Roketenetz | CRWP Speaker Series - YouTube

The Ohio State University Bee Lab Courses and Webinars

Using EQIP to Create Pollinator Habitat on Ohio's Farms

Native Seed Vendors and Habitat Creation Resources

Our ecoregional planting guides, Selecting Plants for Pollinators, are tailored to specific areas of the United States. You can find out which ecoregion you live in and get your free guide by entering your zip code.

One of the most valuable things that citizens and landowners can do for monarch and pollinator conservation is to create, enhance, or restore native habitat. This useful guide Monarch Wings Across Ohio's Farms can provide guidance on creating monarch habitat on Ohio’s Farms! It has tips on preserving and enhancing existing habitat, as well as creating and maintaining habitat.

Pheasants Forever and Quail Forever's Native Seed Program - Pheasants Forever and Quail Forever's Native Seed Program provides landowners the ability to purchase custom and pre-packaged pollinator seed mixes at an affordable price. Their diverse mixes have been designed by a team of wildlife biologists to meet state and federal standards while providing quality habitat for birds, bees and butterflies. There are Ohio-specific seed mixes for ecoregions across the state.

The OSU Bee Lab Native Plant recommendations for pollinators

LEAP for Biodiversity Native Plant Resources

ODNR Milkweed and Monarchs Brochure

Grow Native Resource Page - Complete guide to seed vendors, contractors and all things native.