Bee Friendly

On Saturday the 10th of June, Herts and Essex community farm is challenging members of the public to help Bees.

Over the last couple of years reports of bees dying out and becoming extint have recoured over and over again. But is there any truth behind them?

According to one reporter for the CNN it is in fact the case around the world.

You may just think so what? Bee’s are only good fot making honey. Well that isn’t the case at all, Bees are natures natural pollinators. They help produce some of nature’s most nutritious and beloved foods such as almonds, pears, avocados, grapes and even Wine!

There are other animals and insects that help pollinate such as birds and bats. However they too are under threat because of widespread pesticide use, climate change, the emergence of foreign pests, diseases and loss of Habitat. Between April 2015 and April 2016, beekeepers in the United States lost 44% of their colonies and in the UK, beekeepers reported losses of almost 17 percent, according to the British Beekeepers Association.If you’re a beekeeper, farmer or consumer you have something to lose if bees disappear — and a significant role to play in their survival.

You dont have to be a farmer to fave the lives of bees, there are some flowers you can plant in your back garden. Below are nine bee frienldy wild flowers that you can grow at home though out different times of the year.

Bluebell (Hyacinthoides non-scripta)

Perennial bulbs, with stunning blue bell-shaped flowers that have a sweet scent. They look spectacular when grown in groups. Make sure you plant true native British bluebells.

Bluebells grow well along a hedge or under trees and provide a great early food source for bees.

Flowers: May to September.

Foxglove (Digitalis purpurea)

Tall, hardy biennial with pink trumpet-shaped flowers. Foxgloves tolerate shade well, but flower best in full sun. It freely self-seeds.

This classic cottage garden plant is loved by long-tongued bumblebees such as the garden bumblebee (B. hortorum) and the common carder bee (B. pascuorum).

Flowers: June to September. 

Comfrey (Symphytum officinale)

A very hardy perennial, and great for the back of a herbaceous border. It prefers damp places but will grow almost anywhere.

It has a long flowering period that’s loved by bumblebees, especially long-tongues species. Short-tongued species such as the buff-tailed bumblebee (Bombus terrestris) often bite through the side of the flower to reach the nectar.

Flowers: May to August.

Clovers (Trifolium species)

Red clover (T. pratense) and white clover (T. repens) are adored by bumblebees. Red clover in particular is a favourite with many of the really rare and more common bumblebee species.

Clovers aren’t particularly showy as garden plants, but they can grow well in a border. They grow better as part of a wildflower meadow area if you have room.

Flowers: May to September (red clover); April to October (white clover). 

Greater knapweed (Centaurea scabiosa)

A beautiful thistle-like wildflower. It produces dozens of large vibrant purple inflorescences on tall stalks that act as magnets to pollinating insects.

Greater knapweed is a common meadow wildflower, but it also looks fabulous among other plants in a herbaceous border.

Flowers: July to September. 

Hellebore, stinking (Helleborus foetidus)

An unusual looking native evergreen perennial plant. It has light green bell-shaped purple-edged flowers that hang from a thick upright stem. It gets its name from the unpleasant smell of its crushed leaves.

Stinking hellebore flowers in late winter so is great for early emerging queen bees. It grows well in shady spots.

Flowers: January to May.

Honeysuckle (Lonicera periclymenum)

Honeysuckle

This native plant is a vigorous climber and a great addition to a wildlife garden. In summer, its highly fragrant, tubular, pink and cream flowers are buzzing with bees and other pollinators. It is a common species in hedgerows and woodland.

Train it up a wall, fence or over an obelisk. If you prune it hard it thickens up to become an ideal nest and roost site for birds.

Flowers: June to September.

Viper’s bugloss (Echium vulgare)

A stunning biennial plant for a herbaceous border, with spikes of vivid blue flowers up to 60cm tall. It will attract a cloud of bumblebees in high summer.

Viper’s bugloss is perhaps the best single plant to attract long-tongued bumblebees to your garden. Much loved by almost all species, and it looks great too.

Flowers: June to September. 

Wood anemone (Anemone nemorosa)

Small white flower

An ancient woodland plant and one of the most beautiful wild flowers of early spring. It’s star-shaped flowers have 6 white petals around a green centre with yellow stamens.

It tolerates poor soils in both shade and sunlight. Plant it in the shade under trees and shrubs, or out at the front of the border in full sun.

Flowers: February to May. 

 

So Give is ago plant some wildflowers and show us how you got on, we’d love to see all the fun you guys had helping the bees.

Source of information:

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s