Anyone who has seen a nature documentary or something about climate change knows that bees are essential to life as we currently know it. The busy bees not only make delicious honey to sweeten your fresh mint tea, they also pollinate flowers and plants. Bee numbers are declining because we have fewer flowers and plants outdoors and because they are being killed by pesticides and diseases. If the bees have no food, we have no food. So do your bit and create a bee-friendly garden!
BEE AND FLOWER CALENDAR
The Milieu Centraal website features a handy calendar with flowers and plants that can make your garden attractive to honeybees and bumblebees. And it doesn’t need to be complicated. The calendar includes lavender, Verbana, Buddleja and ivy. You're bound to be familiar with those, and they account for a large proportion of the year.
TIPS FOR BEES IN YOUR GARDEN
As well blooming flowers and plants in your garden - check the calendar - there are other things you can do to lend bees a helping hand. For example, try installing a bee hotel: one of those cute little houses that contains what looked like rolls of parchment. It’s also best to avoid using pesticides. This applies both to pesticide use in the garden and on seeds and new plants that you want to plant in the garden. Always read the label, and if you’re unsure what an ingredient is, ask at the garden centre.
A WILDLIFE-FRIENDLY GARDEN
We have written about a wildlife-friendly garden before. How can you help birds, slugs and snails, hedgehogs and bees? Take a look at our slugs and snails article, an autumn garden full of wildlife and sunflowers as snacks from birds. You can make your garden as wildlife-friendly as you want. There might be some scrabbling here and there or you might be surprised by a guest living in a plant pot, but generally it’s great fun to have all this activity going on in the garden, isn’t it?