Having a Bee House in your Garden

Bees are important, you need bees, providing them a place to live free of charge. Bees are crucial for pollinating vegetables, flowers and fruit. The bee population is dwindling due to pesticides and unethical pollinating. Attracting bees in your garden is an easy thing to do. There are several styles of Bee houses to get. It gives them a safe place to live and throughout the spring and summer they will pollinate your flowers for you.

What do Bees Love?

Bees love Herbs, just about any kind. Try planting Lavender, Borage, Bee Balm, Mint, Thyme, Rosemary, Sage, and even Oregano. Bees love to eat the nectar from those flowers. Annual flowers such as marigold, cosmos and sunflowers are bee favorites as well. Planting a Bee garden that is free from pesticides is responsible. These flowers will provide enough food for them all season long. The bee population is at risk and any little help you can give to them they need.

bee house

There are many Bee houses on the market to choose from. Some are made from poly lumber which last longer. There are some that are wood. Shown is the Babmbeco Bee house. The tubes inside are cardboard and every year you will take the old tubes out and replace them with new ones. The standard size for these are 5/16 in diameter. The bees during the season will fill the holes up with mud to make walls between the cocoons. Do not disturb the house during June and July.

The other type of bee houses are made out of poly plastic or a heavy duty wood and you will not have to replace tubes but you will need to clean the house each year. Most of these houses have removable routed Pine Panels. This makes for easy cleaning at the end of the season.

We live in Florida and our seasons for bees last from early March to late October, but no matter where you live if you have a garden then having a bee house is such an asset to your beds.

How do Mason Bees Live?

The type of bees that normally go in these are Mason Bees. Your bee house will attract orchard, leaf-cutter, aphid or carpenter bees, as well.

Just a fun fact, 6 mason bees can pollinate one fruit tree compared to 10,000 honey bees

The Smell of Charred Pine attracts Mason Bees. so keep an eye out for that feature if you are getting a house that has the panels instead of the tubes. This house shown is one of my favorites, We have this and it has made such a difference in my garden it is called the JCs Wildlife Small Poly Lumber Bee House.

bee house

Taking care of our Bees

In October, you will remove the panels and see the cocoons, Each nesting slot can contain up to 8. Remove the cocoons and place them inside a container with a lid that you can poke a hole in for next spring, store them in the fridge. The following year when spring has come and the weather starts to warm up around 55-57 degrees for a few days constant. Take the container out of the fridge, leave the lid on, put it outside. Poke a hole in the top of the container and in a few days you will see the bees escape. Bees Hibernate for 6 months. So during this time, you need to clean the nesting material from each slot in the house.

No honey from the Bees

When you have a Beehouse don’t expect for it to have honey , these are just places for bees to “chill out” while laying their babies and giving them shelter, It will attract them to stay in your garden and do a job, It is a win-win situation. You give them shelter they will pollinate your flowers.

Happy BEE Housing :)!

Check out Amazon, Plow and Hearth, Burpee and sometimes your local garden center will have bee houses for sale as well. Having Bees in our garden is not only beneficial for you and your garden but the ecosystem in general.

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