Pollination Facts 75% of plants are pollinated by animals 1/3 of our food depends on pollinator/plant interaction Many plants cannot reproduce without the help of pollinators Landing platforms helpful
Honey Bees are Our Friends While honey bees will sting, they do so only to protect their hives and themselves. Beekeepers who know what they are doing rarely get stung by bees even when opening a hive! Some beekeepers even “grow” bee beards!
Cons Bees do protect their hive or themselves Stings hurt But it hurts the bee more; they will die Approach a hive in protection suit Bees do take some work Become knowledgeable Your are their caretaker
Who stung you? Could be the wasp. Which one is a honey bee?
Beekeepers Beekeepers keep honeybees in bee hives; a bee hive gives the bees a place to live.
Planting Guidelines Sunny location preferred Protected from the wind Several types of flowers Blooming continuously early spring to late fall Native bees adapted best to native plants Guideline are good for other insects, butterflies and birds too Urban area may be better than country area
Plant suggestions- learn about your natives Native plants are 4 times more attractive than exotic flowers Herbs, annual, perennials, and heirlooms can provide good foraging Flowers and bees help each other Allow plants to flower Dead heading plants might increase blooms Avoid hybrids with double blooms-less nectar or pollen Plants can be host to caterpillars Could be called ‘weeds’ Avoid invasive plants Some might be trees or shrubs
Seasonal Plan to have something is bloom all season long – early spring, summer, until late fall Plant at least 3 different types of flowers per season Bees and butterflies fly at different times They appreciate a garden with varieties of flowers and long season of blooms Perennials might have a delay in a new garden before they start blooming Annuals help to fill in bloom times before perennials become established
Plant different types of flowers Plant a wide variety of flowers Plant in clumps rather than single plant The family of bees range in size: Minute sweat bees to robust carpenter bees They have different tongue lengths Some flowers are flat, daisy-like flowers Some flowers are tubular blossoms Bees are attracted to bright colors, blue, white, purple Bees see in ultraviolet colors
What Bees See We see in Red, Blue, Yellow Bees see UV, Blue, Green (think color blind) Bees do not see Red
Image of UV Flowers
Anatomy of a Flower
Nectar Nectar is a sweet liquid made in special glands called nectaries that are found on flowering plants Nectaries are most often found by the base of a flower’s petals Nectar is the reward given to insects and small animals Nectar is the base ingredient of honey
Invasive Plants Invasive plants are ones that out compete native plants to the natives’ detriment Thistle – bull, Canada, milk Garlic mustard Queen Anne lace Chicory Oxeye Daisy Purple Loosestrife* Yellow sweet clover Multiflora rose Purple crown vetch Japanese barberry Honeysuckle-Trumpet, Japanese Oriental bittersweet
Bee Friendly A well run ecological garden attracts birds and beneficial insects that help control pests Avoid insecticides, they are non selective If you must spray, do so when bees are not present, late in the day, be selective Fungicides are also dangerous BT-bacillus thuringiensis Neonicotinoids An insecticidal coating on seeds to prevent insect damage Strongly suspected of being systemic (it stays inside the plant cells, in the blooms)
Water Source Bees need water Hydration-digestion, metabolism, brood, queen Temperature and humidity regulation Bees can drown Floating Landing platform needed Stick, log, piece of wood, water plants, cork Ponds Streams Puddles Dew Garden Water Features (fountains) Can add hive water bottle Pools are not good
Spring Plants Spring a difficult time for native bees Urban areas typically have few early blooming annuals Some flourish in areas that become shady as trees leaf out Weather inconsistent
Native Early Spring Bloomers Native Perennials Columbine Crocus-Prairie Violets Bluebells Virginia waterleaf Wild geranium Wild Indigo “Weeds” Dandelions
Native Early Spring Bloomers cont. Trees and shrubs Fruit trees-apple peach, cherry, crabapple Dogwood – trees and shrubs Chokecherry Lilac Red Bud Raspberry Rose Serviceberry Strawberry Viburnum Willow Wild Plum Black locust Many of these are good for birds too