|Bee Balm and Bumble Bee|
This summer, I've started paying more attention to bees. We've heard about the honey bee Colony Collapse Disorder for a few years now, and I knew that honey bees were imported by European settlers when they arrived. But somehow, I never gave much thought to pollinators before that time, although logically, the Western Hemisphere had to have its own pollinators.
|Bee Balm and Gray-headed Coneflower|
|Bumble Bee on Bee Balm|
|Common Milkweed buds|
|Purple Coneflower with Sweat Bee|
- Use local native plants, which are as much as four times more attractive to native bees than exotic flowers.
- Choose several colors of flowers. Native bees are especially attracted to blue, purple, violet, white and yellow blossoms.
- Plant flowers in clumps. That way the bees don't have to fly so far to pollinate another flower of that species.
- Include flowers of different shapes. Bees come in different sizes, with different length tongues and need a variety of flowers to feed on.
- Have a diversity of plants flowering all season. This supports a range of bee species that fly at different times of the season, and certainly makes your garden more interesting.
Sure, I'll brag on my husband, who has done a wonderful job with our garden. And every year it gets better and better!