Create a garden for the Bees

A-Garden-For-The-BeesPlant native and wildflowers.
Bees love blue, purple and yellow flowers. Native and Heirloom flowers are usually best as they produce more pollen and nectar. Don’t forget to plant flowering herbs as well. Plant flowers in same colour clusters. A variety of seasonal flowers that begin blooming in very early spring into late fall will provide food sources for months for bees, and other pollinators like hummingbirds and butterflies. If you have the space, consider planting a wildflower meadow that doesn’t get mowed.

Bees need water.
Provide a shallow birdbath filled with clean water; make sure there is a layer of pebbles in the bottom of the bath so bees don’t drown. A small pond or a source of dripping water also works well. Dont’ worry about mud, mason bees like to build nests with it.

Please print and share the free poster (left) to spread the word on how you can help bees.

Bees need shelter.
Dead wood and leaves provide shelter and nesting spaces for mason bees. You can also make or buy nesting boxes at your local garden centre. To make your own, drill 5/16”  holes, 6” deep,  into a block of wood and hang it about four feet off the ground in a safe protected area in your garden.

Pesticides can kill bees.
Even organic pesticides and herbicides sold in local hardware and gardening shops can be toxic to bees and other pollinators. Try making your own soap-based sprays or, even better, recruit ladybugs and other beneficial insects to help with pest problems.You can order ladybugs from your local garden shop. Don’t kill dandelions and clover; they are a great source of pollen and nectar in the early and late seasons. Avoid buying GMO flowers and plants for your garden.

Check out these resources for learning more about bees and what you can do to help:

http://www.davidsuzuki.org/what-you-can-do/food-and-our-planet/create-a-bee-friendly-garden/

http://thehoneybeeconservancy.org/act-today-2/plant-a-bee-garden/

http://www.helpabee.org/gardening-for-bees.html

Are you feeling overwhelmed with all of the news regarding our environment? Do you feel helpless and uncertain how you can help? If we all take small steps in our own homes and yards we will become part of a collective, a hive of others who are also making changes to help the natural world, and ultimately ourselves.

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