Celebrating the launch of the MY GARDEN OF A THOUSAND BEES Film, Nature and HHMI Tangled Bank Studios Join World Wildlife Fund and Air Wick®’s One Square Foot Initiative to Raise Awareness About Pollinators, Wildflowers and Healthy Ecosystems
HHMI Tangled Bank Studios, Nature and select PBS stations will host planting and screening events with libraries and community gardens across the country through summer 2022 to encourage the creation of pollinator habitat and distribute activity guides and educational materials
October 20, 2021 – Nature PBS kicks off its 40th season on PBS today at 8 p.m. ET on PBS pbs.org/nature and the PBS Video app with the premiere of My Garden of a Thousand Bees, a film by Passion Planet following one of the world’s top wildlife filmmakers, Martin Dohrn during the COVID-19 lockdown of spring and summer 2020, as he films the native bees in his urban garden in England. In support of the film, HHMI Tangled Bank Studios and Nature join “One Square Foot,” an initiative from World Wildlife Fund (WWF) and Air Wick® Scented Oils that aims to raise awareness about the critical need for more wildflower habitats and the importance of pollinators to ecosystems by inviting people to plant one square foot of wildflowers.
Surrounding the My Garden of a Thousand Bees film, mission-focused HHMI Tangled Bank Studios is supporting a multi-year national outreach and educational initiative to help audiences across the country better understand and appreciate the role bees and other pollinators play in healthy ecosystems. The effort, led by HHMI Tangled Bank Studios and Nature, will feature pollinator-related video and social media content from Nature and Seeker, featuring entomologist Samuel Ramsey (a.k.a, Dr. Buggs); formal and informal educational materials created by World Wildlife Fund and PBS Learning; and local activations—including seed planting events, screenings and activities—via PBS stations and the STAR Library Network to libraries, nature centers and community gatherings. The goal of the effort, and of joining the One Square Foot initiative, is to raise awareness about the importance of pollinators and to encourage the creation of wildflower gardens where pollinators can thrive.
Air Wick Scented Oils and WWF launched the One Square Foot initiative on March 12, 2021, National Plant a Flower Day, and committed to reseeding one billion square feet of native wildflowers and grassland habitats in the Northern Great Plains over the next three years, the largest single corporate contribution to WWF’s Northern Great Plains program. One Square Foot raises awareness about the critical need for more wildflower habitats and encourages the public to take part in improving local and national biodiversity. The One Square Foot initiative invites people across the country to plant one square foot of native wildflowers to support pollinators and the ecosystems they inhabit. Planting just one square foot of wildflowers can provide food and resources for local wildlife and help revitalize the environment for miles around. Any small space can have a huge impact.
To reach classroom audiences with information about pollinators and the important role they play, WWF’s Wild Classroom developed educational materials to help connect kids to nature and the critical need for native wildflower and grassland habitats like the Northern Great Plains. This pack contains a collection of activity guides designed to encourage learners to explore, analyze, and discuss the importance of grassland ecosystems like the Northern Great Plains, the benefits grasslands provide to wildlife and people, and our role in protecting them. The resources, developed with support from HHMI Tangled Bank Studios, also take a look at the role pollinators play to keep ecosystems healthy while familiarizing learners with the pollinators and wildflowers native to their area. The activities incorporate critical skills like collaboration, responsibility, and problem-solving while tied to Next Generation Science Standards. Available to download at wildclassroom.org, these resources can be used with students in grades 3-8 and in any learning environment.
The WNET Group is developing educational materials utilizing some of the incredible footage from the My Garden of a Thousand Bees film. These standards-aligned classroom resources are designed to help middle school students hone their observation skills while learning about the importance of bees in our ecosystem. The resources are available free of charge on PBS LearningMedia (pbslearningmedia.org), a website for educators with over 2 million registered users nationwide and more than 30,000 classroom-ready digital media resources for preK-12.
To engage Seeker’s audience of more than 15 million 13–20-year-olds, the digital science producer, in partnership with HHMI Tangled Bank Studios, will launch #BeeWeek featuring seven videos shared across six of Seeker’s most popular platforms. The content will highlight stories about North American bees and feature the work of Dr. Sammy Ramsey – aka Dr. Buggs – a prominent science communicator and USDA entomologist. Running from October 25th through October 28th, videos carrying the hashtag #BeeWeek will explore topics ranging from invasive parasites that endanger pollinator populations to the biodiversity of wild bees that often go overlooked or underappreciated. The week will culminate in a live Q&A event on Seeker’s Instagram on October 28 at 7 p.m. ET with Dr. Buggs featuring a guest appearance by Clay Bolt, a fellow entomologist and senior program officer with World Wildlife Fund’s Northern Great Plains Program.
Starting in spring 2022, select local PBS stations will host special screening events of My Garden of a Thousand Bees, coordinate planting events, and distribute free, native, regionally appropriate, pesticide-free seeds to local communities. In addition, HHMI Tangled Bank Studios will kick off an outreach effort with StarNet’s extensive network of libraries across the country to reach more than 50 libraries, nature centers and community groups. Participating libraries will be able to host free screenings, planting events and bioblitzes, and to distribute educational resources and free native wildflower seed packets to their constituents – all with the goal of creating crucial pollinator habitats in backyards and communities across the country.
Nature: My Garden of a Thousand Bees is a production of Passion Planet, The WNET Group and HHMI Tangled Bank Studios in association with Ammonite Films. Filmed and narrated by Martin Dohrn, the documentary is directed by David Allen and produced by Gaby Bastyra. David Guy Elisco and Sean B. Carroll are Executive Producers for HHMI Tangled Bank Studios. For Nature, Fred Kaufman is Executive Producer.
Please visit www.MyGardenOfaThousandBees.org to watch the film, explore videos about pollinators, access educational materials, request free native wildflower seeds, and learn more about the One Square Foot Initiative.
Nature pioneered a television genre that is now widely emulated in the broadcast industry, bringing the natural world to millions of viewers. The series has won more than 700 honors from the television industry, the international wildlife film communities and environmental organizations, including 20 Emmys and three Peabodys. Consistently among the most-watched primetime series on PBS, Nature continues to innovate through original digital programming and a commitment to converting viewers into doers. Nature’s award-winning website, pbs.org/nature, features full episodes, short films, digital series, behind-the-scenes content, news articles, educational resources and more. Nature is available for streaming concurrent with broadcast on all station-branded PBS platforms, including PBS.org and the PBS Video App, available on iOS, Android, Roku streaming devices, Apple TV, Android TV, Amazon Fire TV, Samsung Smart TV, Chromecast and VIZIO. PBS station members can view many series, documentaries and specials via PBS Passport. For more information about PBS Passport, visit the PBS Passport FAQ website. Nature is a production of The WNET Group for PBS.
About HHMI Tangled Bank Studios
HHMI Tangled Bank Studios is a mission-driven production company that crafts exceptional films about science and scientists for broadcast, theatrical and digital distribution. As storytellers within a world class science organization, the studio is uniquely positioned to shine a light on some of the most significant scientific challenges and breakthroughs of our time. Recent films include Emmy-nominated Nature’s Fear Factor, CNN/BBC’s Race for the Vaccine, which followed leading scientists developing the Covid vaccine during the pandemic; The Farthest – Voyager In Space, which won the Emmy for best science documentary; The Serengeti Rules, which won the Emmy for outstanding nature documentary; Peabody Award-winning Inventing Tomorrow; and Ric Burns’ critically acclaimed Oliver Sacks: His Own Life. To deepen the learning and extend the reach of each film project, the studio undertakes educational and public outreach efforts in partnership with mission-driven organizations. For more information, please visit WWW.TANGLEDBANKSTUDIOS.ORG.
About Martin Dohrn and Passion Pictures
Producing the documentary My Garden of a Thousand Bees, Martin Dohrn teamed up with David Allen at Passion Pictures. With two Academy Awards, Passion is at the forefront of documentary production specializing in both feature doc productions and landmark natural history productions. Martin Dohrn is an Emmy award-winning, three-time Bafta-nominated filmmaker who has been producing natural history films for more than 30 years. During this time, he has devised game-changing techniques in low-light and macro filming, allowing audiences remarkable new insights into the natural world. David Allen is a five-time Emmy award winner and is recognized as one of the leading directors in his field, creating inspiring range of science and natural history documentaries. For more information, please visit www.passion-pictures.com/work/specialist-factual/