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Monthly bee page – January

Bee-friendly plants out in flower
Summer is the perfect time to see the bees at their busiest (or buzziest!). Check out the top five flowering bee-friendly plants this month.

 

Cornflower*
Also known as the ‘bachelor’s button’, the cornflower is a blue flowering annual that attracts bees far and wide. Especially entertaining when a large, oversized bumble bee lands on a dainty flower in the wind.

Echinacea
A well-known attractant for all bees and many butterfly species, echinacea’s leaves, flowers and roots also have natural therapeutic uses.

Marigold
Well known as companions for veggie beds, marigolds are known to keep away certain pests from the garden. Marigolds will also attract butterflies such as the monarch butterfly – fantastic if your swan plants are looking a little bare!

Pohutakawa – now instore!
Our native ‘Christmas tree’ is loved by both bees and native nectar drinking birds such as the tui and bellbird. Don’t have a lot of space in the garden? Ask about our dwarf variety!

Orange & Citrus
The bees will be all over the citrus that are now coming into flower. Companion planting with another bee attractant can encourage more bees, which will mean better pollination and potentially more fruit!

 

 

Bee-friendly plants ready for planting
Fertilise with organic liquid fertiliser such as Ocean Grow, once every two to three weeks. Make sure you water throughout summer!

 

Thyme
Attractive groundcover that is also a culinary delight! Best in full sun in well-draining soil. Drought tolerant.

Borage*
Grown for its pretty blue flowers that are renowned for attracting bees into the garden. Sow either in a pot or directly into the ground. Grows in both full sun to semi shade. Plant around your fruit trees and veggie garden to encourage pollination.

Alyssum – instore now!
This cascading bedding plant with its bunched white flowers is a favourite choice for hanging baskets and patio pots. Plant from spring to autumn in a partly shaded to sunny area in well-draining soil.

Chives
A perennial plant that is commonly used as a herb but also gives out beautiful purple ‘pom-pom’ type flowers that all bees love.

Verbena
Pretty little annual and perennial bedding plants that are native to America and Asia. Most species are drought resistant tolerating full to partial sun and enjoy normal to well-draining soil.

 

* An absolute bee favourite

 

Monthly bee tip:

If you are needing to spray products in your garden, remember to always spray in the evening and never on flowering plants. This way bees are less likely to be affected in your garden, as well as other beneficial insects!

 


Get involved with your community to learn how you can help your local bees thrive with different plants and planting techniques. Check out our bee-enthusiast partners, For The Love Of Bees, on their website www.Fortheloveofbees.co.nz, or follow them on Facebook for more info.