There are over 250 species of bumblebees in Britain alone and with summer in full swing, you may have noticed a buzz in your garden. Bees play an important role in our ecosystem by pollinating the crops we grow. Nurturing a diverse range of nectar-providing flowers and pollen-rich plants is a great way to encourage bees into your garden.
Plants for Pollinators
With warmer weather and longer daylight hours, summer is a great time for gardening. However, different bees are active throughout the seasons, so attracting pollinators to your green space can make gardening a yearlong project. Lavender and honeysuckle are summer favourites and will not only bring a splash of colour, but a fresh, floral scent to your garden.
Apple and other fruit trees are excellent nectar and pollen sources, providing food for the bees and food for your table. During late autumn and winter, crocus, ivy and snowdrop plants are key nectar sources for late emerging bees. A variety of differently shaped flowers will attract other species of bee with varying tongue size.
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Top tip: If you see a low-energy, tired bee, a mix of white sugar and warm water should get them up and flying again. Place the solution on a teaspoon near to the bee and give them time to get energised.
Have you got an empty wooden box lying around? Fill it with some hollow sunflower and bamboo stems of varying diameters and place on its side to create a bee hotel. Our cut resistant Showa 541 gloves will come in handy here for cane and stem cutting and keep you safe when using sharp tools.
Leave the hotel in a sunny area and wait for your guests to arrive. Solitary bees such as the mason bee and the mining bee might pay a flying visit. As there is no hive or honey to protect, solitary bees are non-aggressive and are less likely to sting.
A bee hotel is a great way to get kids interested in gardening. Find our range of children’s gloves here.
Cut back on the weeding
Many weeds such as dandelions and clovers can be rich in pollen and nectar and are a great low maintenance crop to have in the garden. A wild, designated weed zone, away from other plants can create a nutrient rich soil and encourage a biodiverse environment. Weeds can attract other pollinators such as butterflies and other insects that feed on pests.
If weeding is a must, then try to avoid using pesticides where you can. The Benchmark Durable Gloves allow great grip for a variety of gardening tasks and are designed to be strong and long-lasting.
Top tip: If you’re pushed for garden space, place small flowerpots or a smaller bee hotel on windowsills or balconies to attract bees.
Bee populations are at a worldwide low, with factors such as pesticides, climate change and loss of habitat playing a significant involvement in the decline. From bee hotels to growing nectar friendly plants, there are many ways to make a difference to our key workers.
Want to get involved with more green projects? Check out the rest of our glove range here.