POLLINATOR PLANT LIST
WATER-WISE PLANTS THAT HONEY BEES ARE PROVEN TO LOVE!
I can't tell you how much I enjoy researching this pollinator plant list! I spent hours last summer, wandering the garden and the neighborhood, in search of honey bees and the plants they swarm to. My list of plants that the honey bees love is far from complete, but I plan to continue building on it as personally witness the girls foraging on their flowers.
FUN FACT! Over 2,000 years ago Aristotle observed that honeybee workers visit flowers of only one flower type during a foraging trip. This is known as flower constancy and is what gives honey its different colors and unique flavors.
A perennial is a plant that comes back year after year and doesn't have woody stems. They add color and purpose to a landscape.
Shrubs make good homes for small birds and other wildlife. Their woody stems also add interest to the winter garden.
Grow a pollinator paradise in your own backyard!
Choose Native Plants Whenever Possible
Bees and plants evolved together, native flowers have all of the characteristics to attract bees, and other native pollinators who are in decline.
Choose Straight Species
Double Flowers prevent pollinators from visiting, as the petals have taken place of, or block the pollen and nectar sources. Often double flowers are sterile, so this also means that they wont have seed available for the birdies.
Cluster Like Plants
Many bee friendly plants have flowers that are small and might be ignored if grown alone. To attract more bees, group like plants in odd numbers (5,7,9,etc.), you can even plant an entire yard of the same plant species, just to ensure they get noticed.
Consider the Blooming Cycles
Different plants types bloom at different times of the year, and have different bloom lengths. Those with late blooming cycles and those with long blooming cycles are the best for bees.
Provide a Source of Clean Water
Bees NEED water. It is not uncommon to see a cluster of bees near a water source, like your neighbors pool for example. Bees drown easily, so you should provide a shallow bird bath, dripping hose, or any other shallow water feature.
Ensure a Chemical Free Garden
Sadly, beekeepers have to replace brood comb every 3-4 years because the chemical build up in the wax becomes toxic to the baby bees. You should avoid any type of chemical in your garden. Herbicides, pesticides, and other types of chemicals have a negative impact on bees. They are toxic and will affect other useful insects as well.
Consider Flowering Weeds
Certain weeds such as clovers, milkweed, dandelions, goldenrod, and many others make excellent flowers for bees. If allowed to allowed to grow near the apiary they will attract bees. Another advantage with bee friendly weeds is that they have adapted to harsh environments, tend to mature faster, and require zero maintenance.