Ah, the magic of bees. They bring us all kinds of wonders, like the lovely scented beeswax of which we make candles, natural polish for children's toys and non-toxic crayons. Not to mention Bee's wraps! They provide us with golden honey that we pour over sweet strawberries that they helped us grow. They give us fruits and vegetables, thriving plants and flourishing gardens. They're kind, hardworking creatures that despite what some people think, do not attack without reason (wasps, however, might be a little less friendly).
Bees need 3 things to thrive; food, shelter, and water. Sadly they have trouble finding all of them. The fields are getting bigger, more polluted and so does the expanding concrete cities. There's less room for a flower diversity. Thereby less food for the bees to collect. When the plants on the field are overblown, there's nothing left for the bees to eat. They have to work harder and fly longer to be able to find water, pollen, and nectar.
So this is when you come into the picture...
HOW TO HELP THE BEES NOW!
Create a bee hotel using bamboo sticks or a single piece of wood drilled with 3-10 mm holes. Bees like to build their homes in holes and pipes deeper than 5 cm. See to that, and hopefully, there'll be an appreciative crowd waiting to check in really soon. Place the hotel in a sunny place, preferably facing south and somewhat protected from rain. It can be just as simple or as fancy as you wish.
Bees do not travel very far, they are very active but like to stay local. Make it smoother for them to do their job by providing them with easy access to water. Fill a tray, bowl or bucket with water (preferably rainwater), and arrange a few rocks and pebbles in there to give the bees a safe place to drink from. The stones also serve as landing pads.
ORGANIC FRUIT & VEG
By choosing organic, we keep our pollinators safe from pesticides and harmful chemicals. Also, organic fields do often provide a more extensive range of neighboring wildflowers. Thereby extending the blooming season.
GROW FLOWERING PLANTS
Create a haven of flowering plants and give our pollinators a helping hand at the same time. Nectar contains sugar for energy, while pollen contains protein and oils - essential for the bees survival. Provide them with a diverse buffet, and they'll bless your garden in return. Not only will you get a flourishing oasis to relish. Your crops will thrive, and your garden produce will be something to boast about.
Learn more about bee-friendly flowers and plants here! Try to plant through the seasons and give the bees reasons to stay the year-around.
INSPIRE & INSIST
More green spaces in the neighborhood and bee-friendly habitats should be on the list of demands to pass on to the local politicians. Along with stricter rules on pesticides and more support to organic farmers!
BECOME A BEEKEEPER
There's more to beekeeping than a space suit and a hat with mosquito net. Make sure to attend a beekeepers course before you dive into a beehive in search of honey. There's a lot to learn on the topic, but the reward is worth it! Just think of that golden honey you'll be pouring all over your Saturday scones...
In our personal experience, beekeepers are a friendly bunch and will gladly share their knowledge with you. Make sure to ask your beekeeping neighbors for advice.