I wake to the sound of a buzz in the garden. A bumble is wrestling with the internals of a foxglove. Despite the grey sky and the promise of rain later in the day the bees are already up and working, making the most of the garden, foraging on all that can be found. I thought it was timely to do a round up of what is happening in the garden and share with you what is blooming. What follows is a snapshot, a collection of things, that may offer inspiration or encouragement or simply amusement at my video skills to add something to your gardening story that offers support to pollinators. The video is a quick tour before it rains, apologises for it’s rawness. I have taken the paywall down on a couple of articles I wrote about bee friendly plants which you can read here - I’ve created a nice central spot where all bee friendly articles can be found.
Here are four plants that I am enjoying in the garden at the moment (photos from left to right):
Sage - I often think herbs are under rated in the garden. I use them a lot. They fill in many gaps and they are an easy grow which makes them a quick win if you are new to gardening. They also can add to your cooking.
Geraniums - I have been collecting a few over the season and this pretty purple blue one I had forgotten about until it started flowering. It is often covered in beds, both honey and bumble and is spreading. Hopefully I can divide it in the autumn.
Vegetables - we know the importance of bees when it comes to pollinating veg plants for food but we can also let our veggies seed to provide food for pollinators - I have some rocket that I forgot to harvest which has flowered and is making the bees in the garden very happy.
Alliums - are so sculptural and beautiful. The bulbs can be hard to find and expensive but a cheaper version is to let your onions or garlic turn to seed.
A basic film I will admit but hopefully one we can learn a few things of what we can add to our garden support our pollinators. Sorry for lack of names - I got a bit camera shy. I’m happy to answer any questions in comments. So some things to think about:
Embrace your bee friendly self seeders. Learn who they are and look at where they have decided to grow. This can teach you about your growing conditions. Notice where they are thriving and understand why this is so. It will teach you a lot about your soil and growing conditions which can help inform your future planting choices.
I think I mention it but I repeat a lot of plants and often, ones I know work in my garden space. Mass planting is great for pollinators as they will, especially honey bees, forage one plant at a time. Repeat planting creates a one stop shop for them where they can return and bring their friends.
Look at planting open bloom flowers. I use the rule if I can see the pollen then so can the bees.