Bees are pollinator insects and a critical part of nature’s infrastructure, feeding off of plants and helping to promote new growth. Attracting bees to your yard can be a great way to keep your flowers looking healthy and beautiful. Here are a few tips you can use to encourage them to wander around your garden.
Providing a Safe Space to Rest
For nearly any animal, water and shelter are some of the most necessary needs for survival. Placing shallow dishes of water or fountains with elevated perches in your garden will help bees stay hydrated. Have any extra plant water saucers or plastic containers that are missing tops? Both can be great options for providing a water source. Floating sticks or placing rocks in water can provide safe places for bees to land without drowning.
Providing protection from wind and a safe place to rest can be achieved by including a nesting habitat. You can choose to make or buy “bee hotels” that use natural materials such as twigs or hollow reeds where they can crawl into hollow spaces.
Along these same lines, it is important to give them as much space to roam as possible. Try to keep children and rowdy pets away from the bees so they can freely go about their business.
Choosing the Ideal Plants
Perhaps the most important thing to consider while crafting a bee-friendly garden is to pay attention to what types of plants you include. These insects are typically attracted to vibrant colors, especially blue, purple, and yellow, so interspersing flowers such as lilacs or snapdragons will likely pique their interest.
Because multi-layered flowers are more difficult to collect pollen from, bees will typically be more comfortable with flat, single-petal flowers. Consider including plants such as daisies or geraniums.
If you are maintaining a vegetable or fruit garden, bees can also help promote the growth of your produce. Plants that flower before they bloom like zucchini and strawberries are some excellent options.
Monitoring Your Gardening Habits
When creating an ideal habitat for bees, you will also want to take into account the way you maintain your garden and yard. While it may be tempting to use pesticides or insecticides to keep critters off your plants, these chemicals will also deter bees so it would be best to avoid them as much as possible.
Additionally, because bees are attracted to plants that are native to their area, you may want to consider leaving some weeds around your yard. Dandelions and lawn clovers are excellent sources of pollen.
To keep bees coming to your yard all season long, you will also want to make sure that you stagger your plantings over time. Continuously having new flowers blossom in your garden will provide a consistent source of attraction.
As nature enthusiasts, we love watching plants and animals interact to keep our ecosystems healthy. For more advice about what to include in your garden to attract bees, stop into our greenhouse and let us help you find everything you’ll need!
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