Several dozen municipalities in Quebec are again participating in the Dandelion Challenge this year.

It is a beekeepers' initiative inviting citizens to delay mowing their lawns to encourage the growth of pollinating insect populations.

By not cutting the lawn for a few weeks, residents contribute to providing nectar and pollen to these types of insects thanks to the dandelions that grow naturally on lawns. With this help, the bees have enough energy to start the plant pollination season and greatly promote the growth of fruit and vegetables.

Rather than mowing the lawn as soon as dandelions come out, Dandelion Challenge promotors suggest waiting two to three weeks to cut the grass, and then the dandelions will grow back and renew the nectar and pollen.

Start times for the challenge will vary for cities across Quebec.

For example, the movement in Gaspésie will take place at the beginning of June, whereas in Montreal, it will probably be necessary to mow before the end of May.

The Dandelion Challenge was launched in 2021 by Christina and David Lee, a couple of beekeepers who own Miel&Co in Portneuf, west of Quebec City.

They said that the pollinator extinction rate is much higher than normal and say that mowing the grass later can help.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published in French on May 10, 2023.