Sunflowers, the honeybee plight and an enthusiastic advocate

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Ever meet someone who just lights up your day? That’s the case with Priscilla Parham-Hudson, Master Gardener and tireless crusador for honeybees everywhere.

Priscilla has been working to promote awareness of the importance of honeybees and their crucial involvement in our food supply. Realizing the number of bees has been steadily declining due to Colony Collapse Disorder, Priscilla added beehives to her own garden of carefully chosen bee-friendly plants. Sunflowers are the perfect plant for this region because they provide both the pollen for the protein that the larvae need to grow and the nectar that provides the carbohydrates for energy.

From there, she joined the Talla-Happy Sunflower Program, an outreach to the Tallahassee area, and added her expertise in the pollinator and educational aspects of growing sunflowers. Just like in horticulture, plants have so many wonderful attributes other than the beauty they provide us by looking at them!

In connection with the Leon County Extension Center, Priscilla takes the message of the Great Sunflower Project to local schools, too. The Great Sunflower Project is a citizen’s science project in which participants record the number of bees that visit specific sunflowers every day at the same time. Sunflowers are indicator plants used to monitor the health of our pollinators by tracking their numbers and how often they visit a given plant. Also, because sunflowers are easy to grow they can provide a wonderful hands-on experience for the kids as they become more aware of the importance of our pollinators and how easy it is to grow plants that care for them.

Isn’t that cool?

But as Paul Harvey would have said, here’s the rest of the story…

Priscilla’s interest in this marvelous project grew as a result of her journey back to health. For years she suffered from a myriad of symptoms, one of the worst being an almost everyday occurrence of nausea. She rarely left the house without a plastic bag… just in case.

In her journey back to health, what she discovered was that the biggest factor in her health and well-being, without exception, was diet and lifestyle. “In the past, I was lazy about my food, eating fast food or buying prepackaged foods just because it was easier. I learned that not only were those “foods” not nutritious, they were actually costing me my health. But by making changes that include adding many more fresh vegetables to my diet, getting regular exercise and keeping a regular sleep schedule, I was able get off medications that I was told I would be on for the rest of my life. I am now healthy and energetic.”

Priscilla’s work continues to expand as she rallies against GMOs, too. These days you’ll find her hard at work in her efforts to educate and motivate the community toward greater awareness of the dangers of genetically engineered foods. She also urges Floridians to let their elected representatives know that they support Rep. Vasilinda’s bill to require labeling of GMOs in our State.

Thanks, Priscilla, for the work you’re doing!

Read More:

Healthy Communities Magazine: “The Serendipity of Sunflowers
‘Like’ on Facebook: Talla-Happy Sunflowers (Invite her to speak at your child’s school!)

 

Rhonda Burns writes for PleaseHelpMeRhonda.com and blogs for the North Florida Spine and Wellness Institute in Tallahassee, Florida. She is also author of 30 Ways to Effectively Market Your Business, available on Amazon Kindle.

Rhonda Burns

Rhonda Burns writes for PleaseHelpMeRhonda.com and blogs for the North Florida Spine and Wellness Institute in Tallahassee, Florida. She is also author of 30 Ways to Effectively Market Your Business, available on Amazon Kindle.