Dear Lowe’s: Please stop selling plants treated with neonicotinoids

This Agapostemon bee has something to say.

This Agapostemon bee has something to say.

As I mentioned before, last Valentine’s Day Home Depot and Lowe’s were swarmed by bee-lovers asking them to stop selling neonicotinoids and plants treated with them. The good news is that Home Depot is working on doing better. The bad news is that Lowes won’t even say that they’re not changing anything.

Accordingly Friends of the Earth are calling for a new round of pressure aimed at Lowe’s. So I have signed the latest petition. I dislike signing a petition with a pre-written long letter, so I changed the text to my own not-quite-so-long letter. Here’s my version:

Dear Mr. Niblock,

Like many other petitioners, I remind you that last February thousands of requests were delivered to you, asking Lowe’s to stop selling live plants treated with neonicotinoid insecticides. While your competitor is in dialogue about the situation, you have made no public response. As a shareholder in LOW stock, I am troubled by the company’s silence.

These systemic insecticides are absorbed by seeds, soil, and growing nursery plants into every tissue, including nectar and pollen. Bees that ingest poisoned nectar and pollen suffer the effects of these neurotoxins, including disorientation, memory loss, and death. Neonics are so persistant, a single application remains effective for an entire growing season.

There is no good reason to apply systemic, neurotoxic, persistent insecticides to flowering plants, shrubs, or trees. As a customer, I do not want to buy a “bee-friendly” plant that will kill bees. As a shareholder, I urge you to contact your nursery suppliers and ask them to stop using neonicotinoids. There are many other pesticides and growing practices available for pest control.

Thank you for your attention.

If you care to join me, you may sign the petition here.

About Pam Phillips

I am a writer and gardener. I never cease to be amazed by the wonder and beauty of bees.
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