As the days get longer and the temperatures rise, we will start to notice the bees appearing. However, these docile little creatures are in danger. In the last 80 years, bumblebee populations have plummeted, with some species becoming extinct whilst others are dramatically declining in numbers. Although these insects can sometimes be seen as pests during the summer months, they play such an important part in our eco system, our economy and our daily lives.
What do bees do?
- They pollinate the majority of the world's food crops and help contribute to the production of some of our most important and favourite food crops (peas, tomatoes, apples and strawberries to name but a few)
- They produce honey
- They produce beeswax - which we use in candles, furniture wax, lip balms, cooking and more
What can we do to help?
- Whether you have a large garden, an allotment or just potted plants or a window box, planting bee-friendly flowers where possible can boost local bee populations.
- Bee friendly flowers are ones that are rich in pollen and nectar. Bees need to be able to easily access this throughout the year.
- Don't use pesticides.
- Don't destroy bumblebee nests if you find one.
- Add as much colour as possible. Bees have excellent colour vision.
- Provide water for the bees.
- Buy local, raw honey whenever possible.
- If you have a large enough garden or space, build a bee hotel.
Creating a bumblebee garden
Bee friendly flowers are ones that are rich in pollen and nectar. Bees need easy access to both of these things throughout the year. So, its important to have a range of plants which flower at different times of the year (from March until October when they are active).
STEP 1: Consider the area you are wanting to plant on
Whether it is shady or in full sun will change what is best for you to plant.
STEP 2: Choose the correct plants for the season. Here are just a few examples
Spring: Crocus, Allium, Bluebells, Snowdrops, Hyacinth
Summer: Allium, Star of Bethlehem
As well as Spring bulbs, there are also a variety of herbs and trees which can be a good food source for bumblebees.
Having a pond with some water garden plants and some hedges for nesting will also attract bees to your garden.
If you need any more information about bees then visit our Plight of the Bumble Bee advice page. If you need any help with planting bee friendly bulbs then please contact us. Boston Bulbs Wholesale is a privately-owned business with over 35 years' experience of importing only the finest quality horticultural products throughout Europe and from farms and growers all over the UK. Whether you're a landscaper, nursery, local authority, wholesaler, retailer, private business or individual gardener, just give us a call on 01775 769 333 or visit for help with flower bulbs, grass seed and more.