Sunday, 15 April 2012

Bee Friendly Zones

With all of the focus on honeybees, it's easy to forget all of the other pollinators that are also important to our food supplies and under the same threats from intensive farming and pesticides.

At this time of the year we are all beginning to focus on our gardens and what to plant. We can all help by choosing pollinator friendly plants. The link to Bee Friendly Zones on the left of the page takes you to a site that is rich in resources, like lists of garden flowers, wild flowers, shrubs, herbs & trees that bees will feed on. Most are good for other pollinators too. For instance, if you plant comfrey the nectar is not readily available to honeybees or bumble bees, but bumble bees will chew a small hole into the base of the flower to feed. Honeybees cannot chew through the flower, but will find the holes made by bumblebees and use it to collect the nectar!

I had great success last year with a rais
ed bed dedicated to phacelia, corn flowers and poppys. The hum from that bed could be heard from 20 feet away!

Bees feeding on Phacelia

There is also thyme growing between crazy paving. Bees love th thyme, it smells great as you walk over it and you can use it in the kitchen!

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