I’m thinking that planting forage for all the newbees would be a good idea. Anyone planning to do this?
Hello, yes I am but have no ideas as to what.
Several seed companies sell packets of seeds especially for attracting and feeding bees.
Lavender, Sunflowers, Autumn Joy Sedum, Mint, Wild Flowers, Apple trees are the ones I have planted - there are lots of lists available online relative to your planting zones
The Xerces Society has a list of pollinator friendly plants. Here is the link:
An important thought to keep in mind is when the plants will bloom. Plant so that there is a staggered bloom, allowing for a constant supply of food for the bees. Don’t forget trees. Early flowering willows, maple, Linden, black locust, wild cherry, fruit trees and berry bushes. This will keep the bees happy and provide you with delicious honey.
@Planting Forage: This is a list for the UK of what to plant throughout the year for bee forage. from the British Bee keeper Association http://www.bbka.org.uk/learn/gardening_for_bees.
My bees love the early blooming pussy willows and heathers I have also planted a swath of buckwheat. It really darkens the honey and gives it a rich taste.
I find tons of honey bees on my asters which bloom in sept. So I think it’s a good last feed for them. That’s a possibility. In the spring they love lavender also. This is just observation.
Be careful about planting black locust. The thorns will go through anything and these trees are extremely invasive. Of course, if you are planning to abandon your property, no problem.
We have a lot of Black Locust on our property which was, along with hedge, planted for hedge rows. Those thorns are deadly. They’ll easily pierce heavy leather gloves and boots as well as massive, rear, tractor tires.
I have, however, used some of those thorns to make some primitive sewing needles.
They used to use the thorns as nails - yes, nails - in the old days. The trees make for fantastic firewood, too. Fence posts also last forever. And, of course, there is a great nectar flow. But, to actually plant them …
Borage is a great forage plant and easy to grow. (In the Pacific Northwest, USA.)
It is always good to have as many native flowering plants trees etc. It is also good to research ones that will produce flowers for pollination early and throughout the season when bees are out in your particular area. As I saw one post quoted the Xerces Society and other native plant groups are great resources for all this.
I planted rosemary and lavender all around my bee yard. The bees love those.
one of the things I have read, is if you plant something that has Movement to it then the bees will not be as disturbed and you walk around them for their use to the movement then. So I planted a young Japanese maple and honeysuckle near where I plan to put the Hive.
Also putting in a water garden so the bee’s will have a water source. It will be about 25 feet away from the Hive
Our local beekeeping association has a member who works for the conservation society and has a list of trees etc. to use as forage so it might be a way to look into getting the right advice.
Some great info here for newbees, I now walk around at work looking up at the trees constantly.