Let’s get busy creating a bee friendly garden!
Creating a garden for bees can be so exciting. Both European and indigenous bees are so important for pollinating all plants, including our unique wildflowers. About 78% of flowering plants rely on insects to reproduce. Bees carry pollen from plant to plant and flower to flower, pollinating the trees, herbaceous plants and bushes. Around 85% of food crops that we eat and the seeds, berries and fruit that birds eat, have been pollinated by bees. They are such an important part of our eco system.
What plants should I use?
It would be great to choose a variety of plants that flower in different seasons as bees need a constant food source of pollen and nectar all year round. Did you know that bees have favorite flower colors, especially blue, purple, white and yellow?
It’s a great idea to group your flowering plants together, rather than scattering them around the garden, as this will attract them more easily. Different types of bees have different tongue lengths so it is important to have flowers that have a variety of shapes and depth of flower. If you wander around your garden you might see plants that the bees are attracted to.
Think about where you will plant your plants, the positions in the garden, as different plants like different amounts of sun.
Our indigenous bees also like building materials, so selecting plants that provide nesting materials is a great idea. It is also important for bees to have a source of water. A shallow bowl of water with a rock in it, so that they can crawl out of the water, would be ideal.
Some of the names of the Indigenous bees that we will see in Victoria are Reed Cutters, Blue Banded, Teddy Bear Bee, Leafcutter Bee, Resin and Masked Bees.
Here is a list of plants to grow...
Fun facts about honey bees...
All worker bees are female.
Honey bees have five eyes.
They see in colour.
Bees die after they sting you.
A queen bee can produce up to 2,000 – 2,500 eggs in a day.
A single bee produces about 5 grams of honey in her lifetime.
Drones (male) bees have bigger eyes to assist them in finding the queen bee.
The queen bee runs the whole hive.
A drone’s only purpose is to mate with the queen.
Bees can beat their wings 200 times per second.
A worker bee will live up to six weeks.
Bees have an exoskeleton, six legs and pollen baskets on their back legs, this helps them to transport pollen grains.
Honey has been found in the pyramids in Egypt in pots, thousands of years old, still preserved.
A queen bee can live for 2-3 years.
Click here for bee activity Bee word search
We hope you enjoy planning your garden! Don’t forget to send us a high resolution photo or photos (minimum image size 500KB) of your bee attracting garden via email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Past activities - with more to come.
If you missed them here are the links to our previous Kids' Corner activities:
Kokedama Christmas Balls