Bees are amazing! They truly bring a garden to life with their sound and color, and – more importantly – the hard work they do to pollinate your flowers. Kids love them for their cartoonish appearance and the imaginative stories that they inspire. Yet, sadly, we’re seeing fewer and fewer bees in our neighborhoods, partly as a result of farming methods and humankind’s inability to function in healthy symbiosis with the natural world.
It may be easier than you think to reverse that trend, at least in your own back yard. In fact, the thing bees seem to like the most is variety. Keeping a wide range of flowers and plants in your garden is like providing a smorgasbord of temptations for the stripy critters. Just as important is that the flowers you choose should be native to your region. Local bees and local flowers have evolved in tandem with each other over the years. They are mutually complementary. So it is worth doing your research and – for so many reasons – shopping locally.
Stateside gardeners, for example, might favor the rudbeckia, a sunny bloom whose colors match those of the very insects you hope to woo. They need a good mix of sun and moisture, so it depends which area you live in as to whether you can make it work – but of course, if they’re native to your area you won’t have too much trouble raising a crop.
In the UK, the bees are buzzing for hawthorn. In fact, many places in Europe with similar mixed climates can count the hawthorn among their native species. Pop a few in the ground, and next season you are sure to hear the welcome buzzing of bees.
Wherever you are in the world, you’ll find some handy suggestions on what to plant in this graphic from Budget Direct. Give it a go, because when the bees show their faces, everyone benefits from their merry presence.