A few years ago, a swarm of bees took up residence in one of our wood duck boxes. I could stand mesmerized for long stretches of time watching them busily working flowers in our landscaping and vegetable gardens.
Did you know honeybees make a small slit at the base of some larger flowers and extract the nectar from outside the flower? This was my observation on hosta flowers. I was also surprised so see that most of the flowers in our landscaping, though they were beautiful and even fragrant, were not the least bit interesting to the bees.
Honeybees seem to get drunk in crocus flowers, rolling around in ecstasy inside, but daffodils and tulips sit undisturbed. This is because hybridizing and genetically selecting for specific traits in plants/flowers often results in poor or no nectar or pollen production, or these plant products are lacking critical nutrients the bees
Now that I have my own beehive, I plant with intention, and rely
heavily on native plants I select from the little nursery around the corner that specializes in natives (Scioto Gardens) or from friends who are willing to share a little piece of their own gardens.
Want to see more bees? Check out this short home movie!
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Posted by Patty Shipley.