BeeAction campaign

National Swarm

This February, Friends of the Earth and our allies organized the National Swarm to Save Bees. Activists across the country joined us in delivering valentines and more than half a million petition signatures to Home Depot and Lowe's asking these companies to stop selling bee-killing pesticides called neonicotinoids and garden plants pre-treated with these pesticides. Click here to read the letters Friends of the Earth and allies sent to Home Depot and Lowe's. Read the press release here

Pictures from valentine delivery events can be found at our Flickr and our Pinterest pages. Check out these videos of store front actions in D.C., Chicago and San Francisco.

If you delivered a valentine, we’d love to add your experience to the collection. Please send us your photos, videos and experience to

Consumers: Take action to protect bees.

1) Send a letter to the CEO of Lowe's asking him to stop selling bee-killing pesticides.

2) Tell Congress to stand up for bees and support the Saving America's Pollinators Act.

CompaniesLearn more about why your company should help protect bees by making a commitment to not sell bee-killing pesticides.

Report: Gardeners Beware: Bee-Toxic Pesticides Found in "Bee-Friendly" Plants Sold at Garden Centers Nationwide

A new, first-of-its-kind pilot study by Friends of the Earth-US and Pesticide Research Institute has found 54 percent of common garden plants purchased at top retailers including Lowe's and Home Depot contained neonicotinoid pesticides, which studies show can harm or kill bees and other pollinators, with no warning to consumers.

Download the report and press release


Bees and other pollinators, essential for the two-thirds of the food crops humans eat everyday, are in great peril, and populations are dwindling worldwide.

Pests, diseases, loss of forage and habitat and changing climate have all been identified as possible contributing factors to global bee losses. However, a growing body of science has implicated the world’s most widely-used pesticides, neonicotinoids (neonics) made by giant chemical companies Bayer and Syngenta, as a key factor in recent global bee die-offs. 

But neonics aren't just used in agriculture -- as our new pilot study shows, unbeknownst to consumers, many “bee friendly” garden plants sold at home garden centers have been pre-treated with these bee killing pesticides which can contaminate their gardens and keep harming bees and other pollinators for months to years. 

The European Union suspended the use of three neonic pesticides in December 2013, after a scientific review by European Food Safety Authority found that neonicotinoids pose an unacceptably high risk to bees. In addition, the UK’s largest garden retailers, including Homebase, B&Q and Wickes, have already stopped selling neonics. Unfortunately, despite mounting evidence linking neonics to bee declines, and more than a million public comments urging swift protections for bees, the EPA has delayed action until 2018.

The bees can’t wait that long, and neither can we. 

That’s why Friends of the Earth and allies are calling on EPA and Congress to act quickly to restrict neonics to protect pollinators.

We are also calling on Lowe’s, Home Depot and other top garden retailers to stop selling neonicotinoids and plants pre-treated with the pesticides.  Read our letter to retailers and take action today!


Download the report and our recommendations for consumers, retailers, suppliers, municipalities, institutional purchasers, EPA and Congress here.

Download our letter to retailers.

Read our press release from the National Swarm to Save Bees.

Click here to access Friends of the Earth’s letter to Home Depot and letter to Lowe’s.

Take action


Ask the CEO of Lowe’s to stop selling plants pretreated with bee-killing pesticides.

Follow us on Twitter

Like us on Facebook