Gardening for Honeybees

  1. Nope, no fruit.

    Looks like my dwarf apple might bloom for the first time though.
  2. My dwarf apples have buds just starting on them; my 2 semi-dwarf peaches have opening buds, and the dwarf patio Korean peach tree is budding. The weather here has been very warm all Fall and winter.
  3. This is such a great thread. I just moved into a new apartment and was looking for ideas about what to plant in the planters on my deck. I do live in a city but we have lots of public gardens and arboretums nearby. I'd appreciate any suggestions for what to plant that can help out the honeybees.
  4. Can't help you there I'm afraid... they're all around where I am but that's because there's a few beekeepers in the area.

    I did have a very tenacious honeybee sit slap bang in the middle of my car windscreen yesterday after I left the supermarket though. It had a little creamy sac attached to it. Dad insisted that I put the wipers on after a while saying I was taking the poor honeybee further and further away from it's hive - that bee was hanging on like I don't know what for ages. Speed and wind seemed to mean nothing! Anyway, after a while I did put the wipers on and after a couple of wipes it did eventually fly away. The bees (and wasps and ants) are out and about here - maybe it's the very mild winter we had coupled with an early Spring.
  5. I didnt realize I missed this....
    If your deck gets some good sun, I would say Basil is a good choice, you could get a couple of different varieties and let them go to flower, once they do the leaves will get a bit tough, so you could start another small one as the established ones go to flower.

    I am not sure where you are, and what kind of sun you get. but if you have public gardens and arboretums nearby, they might have some suggestions.
  6. oh my goodness. poor thing. the creamy sac was probably her pollen haul for the day. she may have been too tired. well, hopefully she got home OK.
  7. Not exactly honeybees, but...
    Bee6.jpg Bee7.jpg
  8. We have lavender in our front garden and it attracts a lot of bees. I didn't know I was doing a good thing for the bees but I am glad I am. The pollen is hard on my daughter I am finding out though.
  9. what are those? There are severl species of solitary bees that are also pollinators, also under stress. Some are leafcutters...very cool..
  10. I don't know if they have a scientific name, I just call them Bumblebees. They're probably 3 times the size of a Honeybee. This is a little better shot.
    Bee8.jpg Bee9.jpg
  11. cool! I dont know what they are either. But they are hardworking little pollinators, it looks like :tup:
  12. Yeah, there's a cloud of them around that Wysteria. Probably 40 or so at least.

    Like the honeybees, you can walk right up to the plant and they won't bother you. I suppose if you were to bump into one, it would react instinctively though.
  13. Echoes - I found this information for you about bumbles:

    Bumble bees possess three attributes that will help you to distinguish them from all other bees in the region: they are big, they are more furry than most other bees, and females transport pollen as a wet mass held in a “pollen basket” on the hind leg. The pollen basket of the hind pair of legs is broadened and concave like a shallow, elongate spoon. If empty, its polished surface can be seen reflecting light.

    The one is your picture could be a Carpenter bee if it's belly is hairless. Bumbles are hairy all over.
  14. CBs suggestion of basil is a great one. Really any herbs, provided you have sun will be good. And, you can use fresh herbs in cooking. Oregano flowers prolifically.

    Do you have a cat? Catnip would be a good plant. Another plant that is great for bees and hummingbirds is called Cape Fuchsia (Phygelius), and there are smaller cultivars that do well in a pot. Don't forget Salvias and Penstemon, very pretty and bee magnets. The #1 plant that is a bee magnet here in the west is called the California Lilac (Ceanothus) and there are many small cultivars that work well in a pot.

    I worked for many years as the help desk lady in a garden center. It would always crack me up when people would ask for plants that flower prolifically but that DO NOT attract bees. Really, why bother?

    Echoes comment about a cloud of bees around a Wisteria made me think...a fragrant Honeysuckle vine in a large pot with a trellis would be great and the smell is heavenly.