7 ways to bring bees buzzing into your garden
Did you know that to produce just 450g of honey, foraging bees need to fly around a whopping 88,500km? And that’ll take a heck of a lot of bees, considering each bee will only produce one twelfth of a teaspoon of honey in its lifetime!
Give these poor guys a break by transforming your garden into a bee haven. As you’ve probably heard, since the 1990s, bee populations have been in sharp decline, thanks to factors such as pesticides and climate change.
These hard workers not only provide us with honey, but bees and other pollinating insects play an essential role in ecosystems, too. In fact, one third of all our food depends on their pollination, and without bees, these crops are at risk of extinction.
This is why, if you have a garden, planting a bee-friendly plants should be a priority. Not only will this help increase bee numbers, but bee varieties, too.
And there’s lots in it for you, too. If you are considering planting a vegetable patch, bees will help ensure you come out with a bumper crop, as much of the heavy work of pollinating vegetable crops is done by honey bees.
If you have a garden already and would like to start creating a bee-friendly haven, doing so isn’t as complicated as you may think. Try these tips:
1. Choose plants that attract bees: This is fairly self-explanatory but there are certain plants that are more attractive to bees than others. These plants include the likes of basil, sage, thyme, lavender, watermelons, cucumbers and pumpkin.
2. Group the same plants together: If you have the space, try to plant at least one square metre of the same type of plant together.
3. Pick plants with long blooming cycles: This will keep the bees coming back to your garden.
4. Let your plants flower: Leave the flowers on your plants, this will allow the honeybees to get the pollen and nectar they need.
5. Fresh water source: Any shallow water source will do; a bird bath, a waterfall, a pool or even newly watered potted plants are good for bees.
6. No pesticides or other chemicals: Most chemicals are toxic to bees, so when in doubt, rather leave it out.
7. Weeds: Flowering weeds are very important food sources for bees.
• Source: Garden Master