Wednesday, July 8, 2009


When I told a friend that I planted a 1/4 acre of lavender, she thanked me. Uh-- you're welcome. Why? She told me it was good for bees and that the bees are in trouble. I have to admit that I don't know much about bees. (I don't suppose watching the Bee Movie counts). But I had heard that many honey bee colonies were collapsing and that a virus was suspect. It's my understanding that bees look for herbs like sage, mint, oregano and lavender. I also have to admit that I never considered the bee thing before I planted the lavender. I seem to be able to co-exist comfortably with them, though. When I go out to the field in the morning, the whole field is buzzing with the little pollinators. I'm probably living on borrowed time, but I always walk slowly through the field and they don't care about me at all. As long as they have the lavender, they aren't interested in me. And they're really sluggish- almost "drunk" with the nectar from the lavender. I'm sure one will get me eventually, but for now, I just take it nice and easy out there. Sometimes there are bees on a lavender plant and I take a handful of stems (holding them from the base), cut them, and place them carefully on the drying tray... and the bees never leave the flower. I transfer the bee from the plant to the tray right along with the bundle I cut.

We need these wonderful pollinators. Unless you have a bee sting allergy, consider planting a few things the bees particularly like. And I'm going to do a little research and learn more about bees.


solomi558 said...

Hi I,m cottonreel. I know nothing about bees but I have a lavender hedge and lots of flowers. I,am fascinated how hard they work and their little striped bodies .They are not an idle insect,think of the honey. I shall visit you again .I,m a p/quilter, take a peek at my blog if you have time,
Bye for now

Patty said...

I've heard that bees are in trouble too. I know some people will say "so what" or "Good" but they don't understand the importance of bees. I think I will make a more concious choices when I plant now.

Rachel said...

Bee balm...They like...and it has a very pretty flower.

Anonymous said...

Any planting that is done in my backyard (by my Mom!) is done organically so we always have tons of bees and other bugs!! We get a variety of bees, including the big fat bumble bees that I hadn't seen in a long time.

The only one that gets stung around here is one of my cats. He likes to catch the bees and eat them and they sting him on the inside of his mouth. When one side of his face swells up I give him a "baby" dose of liquid benadryl and he's fine. But he will never learn!!