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There are nearly 250 species of solitary bees. As the name implies, these bees do not form colonies. They usually nest in the ground or suitable cavities in trees and sometimes even buildings. Bees play a crucial role in a large ecosystem.
There are many reasons why bees are endangered, including the impact that human activity has on nature. You can help honeybees if you have a garden by giving them the things they need to thrive. Bee-friendly gardens do more than beautify your backyard; they become vital habitats for pollinators.
Throughout this article, we will explore the importance of bees and discover practical tips for creating a bee-friendly garden that will make a positive difference.
Why Bees Are Important and Why They Need to Be Protected
It is well known that bees play a vital role in nature, pollinating crops and ensuring food supplies. A green world requires more than soil, water, and sunlight. 90% of plants require cross-pollination to grow and reproduce.
Biological diversity and ecological balance are maintained by bees in nature. Each bee colony pollinates 300 million flowers per day. Moreover, bees indicate the health of the environment. Their presence, absence, or quantity changes are signs of climate change, and we should act accordingly.
How to Create A Bee-Friendly Garden
How do I make my garden bee-friendly? Most of the food humans consume depends on bees’ pollination work; without them, humanity and the environment will suffer. It is, therefore, critically important to support the populations of these insects, and one way of doing so is by creating bee-friendly habitats in our gardens.
You’ll find the most helpful tips below for creating a bee-friendly garden:
Use insecticides and pesticides responsibly
You will not have the most bee-friendly garden if you spray it with strong pesticides and insecticides. Surely you can’t attract bees to your garden if it poisons them. Bees are very sensitive to common pesticides. These products contain highly toxic neonicotinoids responsible for Colony collapse disorder. Using such products will kill any bees nearby and deter potential visitors.
You should avoid these products altogether if you want to help the bees. Nevertheless, if you absolutely must use pest control products, here are some things you should keep in mind:
- Among natural insecticides, Bacillus thuringiensis is an insecticide known for its low toxicity to bees.
- Certain miticides, fungicides, and herbicides are not toxic to bees.
- The label BIO or NATURAL isn’t a guarantee that the product isn’t harmful to bees or other beneficial insects.
To ensure bees are not harmed, ask your pest control company about bee-friendly control, or ensure that the product you choose is non- or low-toxic pest treatment.
Plant bee-friendly plants in your garden
You can enrich your green space with bee-friendly garden flowers and plants. The best way to ensure a continuous flowering period in the garden is to select various plants from early spring through early autumn. You can plant Ox-eye daisies, Lavender, Crab apple trees, Bluebells, Rosemary or Crocuses.
Self-seeding flowers work wonders for attracting pollinators. Try self-seeders for a cottage or wildlife design in your bee-friendly garden! Meadow cranesbill, Purple top, Common foxglove, and Violet are great for a bee-friendly garden.
Plants for bee nests
A solitary bee builds a little nest, so it needs some materials. Their usual source of such materials is certain plants. For example, bees cut leaves into nest cells to hatch their eggs. Among the plants with such leaves are Wisteria, Bauhinia, Good old rose bushes and Desmodium.
Taking it easy on the weeding
A fantastic bee-friendly practice is to let weeds grow on their own. Some bees rely on plants that we consider weeds, such as dandelions and lawn clovers, for nectar and pollen. Don’t weed too much unless your garden has plenty of bee-friendly plants and flowers. Landscaping and gardening are popular hobbies worldwide.
Additionally, you can always hire a professional gardener if you’re unsure about proper garden maintenance. Your outdoor space will flourish more if you hire garden maintenance services.
A comfortable place to rest
All day long, pollinating is hard work. Bees need to rest as well. You can make a comfortable resting spot by stacking straws and small sticks. Drill some bee-size holes in a wooden block if you’re feeling crafty!
Resting is great, but bees also get thirsty. Leave a jar of water somewhere in the garden. Place a few pebbles in a shallow bowl, then fill it with clean water. The summer heat is particularly tough on bees.
Using sugar, make an energy drink with bees
Mix one part water with two parts white sugar and pour some of the mixtures into another shallow bowl with “pebble islands”. In this way, the bees will have easy access to nutrition. Bees that are too tired will be able to recover their energy and get back to work quickly.
How To Create a Bee Sanctuary in Your Garden
Additionally, in your garden, you can create a bee “hotel” so they can nest there. You can help the bees by creating a comfortable tiny bee box in which they can live, store food, and raise their young ones.
The materials you use can be anything you find in your garden shed – old pipes, broken pots, logs, or bricks. Add a wooden frame to a solid wood base. Whatever you find suitable for the frame, like logs, twigs, or old egg cartons, can be used. Drill small holes, making sure they are not too close together. You can decorate a bee box however you like to match the rest of your garden. Ensure they are sheltered, near plants and a fence or wall from wind and rain.
A bee-friendly environment can play a meaningful role in contributing to their well-being, as declines in bee populations threaten global ecosystems. By providing nectar-rich flowers and nesting sites and minimising pesticide use, we can actively support bees and enable them to thrive.
You can share your knowledge and passion for bee-friendly gardening with others. To increase the collective impact on bee conservation, encourage friends, neighbours, and community members to create bee-friendly gardens. BeeKind!