If you want a classic cottage garden, this is the plant for you! (USDA Zone 3-9), 16. 6 plants birds love: ... Anise hyssop’s long-blooming blue flower spikes bring in hummingbirds, as well as butterflies and bees, from summer to fall. After all their hard work, bees get thirsty. Be sure to wear gloves when you handle globe thistle, the stems and leaves have spiny bristles. But for bees, the value in chicory is in the sky-blue flowers loaded with abundant white pollen. The violet flowers where the bees dwell produced far more nectar than the next most rewarding flower color, blue. Keep an eye out for how many different looking bees you can see both in your garden and in bushland. With their lovely, blue flower spikes, both are well-behaved additions to the perennial border, long-lived, hardy and easy to grow in full sun and average soil. The strappy, low-growing foliage emerges early and is often gone by the time the flowers bloom. California lilac – Ceanothus sp. Not all flowers are equally liked by bees - bees prefer blue, purple and yellow blossoms. Here are Helga Moll’s short list of 46 plants and trees you can grow to attract honeybees: Flowers That Love Honey Bees: You can dedicate a small part of your yard to bee-friendly options, or go all out! Note. Mountain bluet, perennial cornflower – Centaurea montana (Perennial), All centaurea species – the knapweeds, cornflowers (including annual blue cornflower, C. cyanus), and weedy star thistles – are good sources of nectar and pollen for honey bees, but old-fashioned mountain bluet is a lovely addition to the late Spring-early Summer perennial garden. Full sun. Full sun. Choose single, open flowers where you can see the central part of the flower – where the bees can access the nectar and pollen. Among the most commonly available species are Echinops ritro (the dwarf variety ‘Veitch’s Variety’ is shown here) and E. bannaticus. You can often find bee balm used medicinally in herbal teas and salves to help combat digestive issues, soothe cold symptoms, and even prevent biting insects. Bright, showy flowers are magnets for bees. Perennial plants are those that survive in the garden for a number of years. Type Bulb Blooms Blue with white centers from late winter to early spring Light Full sun to part shade Soil Moist, well-drained Size 4 to 8 in. The plants produce very fragrant, vanilla-scented flowers that range from blue-purple, lavender, or even white. Lavender is a perennial plant, so it makes a great choice for landscaping. Germander sage, Salvia chamaedryoides blooms with beautiful dark blue flowers from late spring to early summer and again in fall. Check out 6 more plants bees love. Once the tiny flowers have been pollinated, the fleshy five-part yellow ring at the center, which acts as a nectar guide, loses its yellow carotene pigment and turns off-white, signalling to the bees that nectar is no longer being produced. Why we love it: One haircut midseason will keep this heat-and drought-tolerant plant looking its best throughout the growing season. In fact, if you stand near a plant on a sunny fall day, the entire plant will buzz and vibrate gently because of all the bees swarming over it. Another way to make your yard a bee haven is to avoid spraying it with pesticides, which are harmful to bees and other beneficial insects. While it’s not recommended that you plant chicory (it’s on the noxious weed list of a number of states), if it’s growing wild near your hives, it will prove to be a good source of Summer pollen. Tips for designing a pollinator-friendly garden. We use them in our salads or as decorations on cakes. Bushy plants bear shaggy blue blossoms on two-foot stems, and repeat-flowering can be encouraged by deadheading spent blooms. We can really help them by providing nectar-rich plants for them. These plants will spread slowly and naturalize to form drifts of color. Plants with flat, single blossoms are easiest for the bees to access. 4. Bloom: Summer. The ‘mist’ part comes from the thread-like leaves that surround the flower, whose pollen-rich anthers attract honey bees and complex nectaries provide nectar. Annual flowers attract bees and other pollinators, of course, but who wouldn’t love less work? After all their hard work, bees get thirsty. Unlike bumble bees and other native bees, honey bees are ‘flower-faithful’ or ‘flower-constant’, as Charles Darwin wrote, learning the intricacies of the anthers or nectaries, then working on one type of flower until its pollen or nectar is depleted. Love-in-a-mist adds charm to mixed plantings, where it is considered a ‘filler’ plant. A group of blooms is easier for the bees to find. Winter-killed branches can be cut back to the ground in Spring to encourage vigorous new growth from the base. Callistemon-- Bottlebrush The abundant bright red flowers of the bottlebrush are attractive to a wide range of native bee species and nectar-feeding birds. Safari Sunrise Aloe Zone: 9 – 11. Purple flowers for Wild Bees – Winter. Type Bulb Blooms Light blue with yellow centers in early spring Light Full sun to part shade Soil Average, well-drained Size 3 to 6 in. And have fun planting your bee friendly garden. The following is a list of annuals, perennials, and herbs that are beloved by bees. – Fruit & vegetables Love-in-a-mist – Nigella damascena (Annual). Attracts: Butterflies, hummingbirds It may grow a bit leggy, but will have a head start the following spring. Depending on the species, globe thistle will reach three to six feet in well-drained, adequately moist soil in full sun. It is a good source of nectar over a long period in Spring, and exhibits an interesting reproduction strategy. If you’re looking for a delicate flower to add to your garden beds, pollinating insects love bluebells. It makes a good garden partner to Russian sage, below. Although double blooms are beautiful, bees have difficulty reaching the nectar inside the flowers. Depending on the variety, hyssop grows between one to two feet tall, and should be sheared back after flowering to maintain a tidy shape. deep and apart. Meadow sage prefers well-drained, average soil in full sun. If that’s too dark for you, Penstemon ‘juicy grape’ is a lighter purple. Different bees are active at different times of the year. Different varieties of the California Lilac provide different blooming times. Plant this little crocus in clusters for a charming early spring effect. The Secret Reason Bees Love Blue and Purple Flowers. Add plants that bees love, and watch your garden become a favorite snack bar for these pollinators. There are many garden strains and species. They come in a range of sizes and colors. Native to east Asia, the species itself is beautiful but there are a few exceptional cultivars, including ‘Dark Knight’ with deeper blue flowers and ‘Summer Sorbet’ with gold-variegated leaves. Plants that Bees Love. Borage is easily grown from seed in constantly-moist average soil in sun or light shade, and will readily self-seed. When conditions are favorable, lungworts will self-seed and even cross with each other, making large colonies. 214: www.agrojournal.org/13/02-08-07.pdf, 12. Blue Flowers – Fascinating to Gardeners and Good for Bees. Use this guide to discover which plants, trees and veg to grow to attract these important pollinators to your patch of the world. Grows to about 1', can be spread by splitting plants. The hardiest species and hybrids, including ‘Dark Star’, pictured, ‘Skylark, ‘Wheeler Canyon’ and ‘Henri Desfosse’  should survive Winter provided temperatures do not go lower than  15°F (-9°C). Here are some supplies and tools we find essential in our everyday work in the garden. Plant bulbs 2 to 4 in. Honey bees and bumble bees are regular visitors for nectar. Male carder bees may be most noticeable as they set up territories around flowering patches and knock into other bees … Blue mist bush – Caryopteris x clandonensis (Subshrub), One of the last shrubs to bloom in the garden, usually in September-October along with asters and goldenrod, blue mist bush (aka blue spirea or bluebeard) literally buzzes with honey bees and bumble bees at a time when nectar flow is subsiding. Globe thistle – Echinops sp. (Perennial), Bumble bees and honey bees can often be found sharing the spherical, mid-late Summer flowers of globe thistle. These wasp-like bees love lamb's ear so much, in fact, the males establish territories around the plants and "head-butt" any bee (other than a female) who approaches. (USDA Zone 3-9), 15. Butterflies, bees, and flower-feeding birds all have a sweet tooth. The list is unique because it is not theoretical as in “your bees … So if you have a small garden, choose just a few from the list below, but plant lots of them. That’s important because it should not be cut back at the end of the gardening season, as with other perennials, but left unpruned until Spring when temperatures have moderated and new growth is showing. Catmint is often used in herb gardens, along with other bee-friendly herbs like oregano, thyme and holy basil. – Flowers Sedum: The nectar-rich flowers of this drought-tolerant succulent are favourites with honeybees and bumblebees. Quantity is important, of course, because honey bees practise economy-of-scale in their foraging trips; they need a sufficient population of each preferred nectar- or pollen-rich plant to make a visit worthwhile. Why would you want bees in your garden? Borage is one of my favorite flowers to grow around the garden, and bees love it too! by Katy - Bee Missionary October 01, 2019. Viper’s bugloss reaches two to three feet in height and flowers from late June to August. Here are 17 excellent blue-flowered honey bee plants arranged sequentially from Spring to Fall. (USDA Zone 4-8), 3. Plants grow 12-18 inches tall and the seed pods are lovely in dried arrangements. If you have deer trouble grow glory-of-the-snow — they usually leave it alone. Keep an eye out for how many different looking bees you can see both in your garden and in bushland. Lavender, crocus, and salvia are perfect purple flowers. By the way, bees love Echiums in general. 4. The bush is just humming. All rights reserved. Catmint is often used in herb gardens, along with other bee-friendly herbs like oregano, thyme and holy basil. Choose blue, purple and yellow: Bees find blue, purple and yellow flowers most appealing. And have fun planting your bee friendly garden. ), and weedy star thistles – are good sources of nectar and pollen for honey bees, but old-fashioned mountain bluet is a lovely addition to the late Spring-early Summer perennial garden. Sometimes called ‘Butterfly Blue’ scabious is excellent at attracting bees and other pollinators who love its bright petals. MIke Cumberbatch/Alamy Calendula Calendula. (USDA Zone 4-8), Long-blooming and an excellent source of nectar for honey bees and bumble bees, catmint is easily-grown in well-drained, average soil in full sun. If you’re looking for a delicate flower to add to your garden beds, pollinating insects love bluebells. Grows to four to five feet and prefers dry, infertile soil. In that survey, I asked where you lived and which plants you actually saw bees foraging on—both honey bees and native bees. For optimal results, why not try a combination of herbs, annuals, and perennial plants? Grape hyacinth – Muscari armeniacum (Hardy Bulb), Being grape-scented, rather than being a true hyacinth, is what gives this little Spring bulb its common name. 13. I love the powder-puff blue of the flowers, and bees seem pretty keen too! So bee colonies that preferred violet … If cut back after their early Summer flowering, it will usually re-bloom in late Summer. While that might be a little somber for you and me (blue flowers, after all, tend to recede in our vision compared to bright yellows and reds), a blue-flowered garden can be a supermarket for honey bees, provided the right plants are grown in quantity and in sequence throughout the foraging season, so there’s always something in bloom. Grape hyacinths flower at the same time as forget-me-nots, below, and they pair well together. Early-emerging bees, such as the young queens of the bumble bee (Bombus spp.) It provides excellent forage for honey bees and bumble bees, and produces a fragrant, rich honey. Another flower which honey bees love, this plant produces many tiny blooms which give it the illusion of having a blue mist. Sidalcea Long-tongued bees will be attracted to plants in the mint family, such as nepeta, salvia, oregano, mint and lavender. An evergreen shrub, the California Lilac offers blue and pinkish or blue flowers known to attract solitary bees, bumblebees, and honeybees. There, plenty of light reaches the plant before the tree leafs out, and it doesn’t mind the dry soil under the tree while it’s dormant. True blues — sky blue, royal blueand even navy — are trickier to source than the lavender blues and purples of more commonplace campanula, salvia and catmint. All centaurea species – the knapweeds, cornflowers (including annual blue cornflower. Different bees are active throughout the year, so you'll need flowering plants from spring to winter. Type Annual Blooms Downward-facing blue in early to late summer Light Full to part sun Soil Average, well-drained Size 1 to 3 ft. tall, 1 to 2 ft. wide. Sedum spectabile*** A succulent herbaceous perennial, flowering in September, and loved by male bumblebees and butterflies. here’s something about shimmering blue flowers that fascinates gardeners – in fact some love them so much that they devote a special section in their garden to blue flowers only. Viper’s bugloss, Blueweed – Echium vulgare (Biennial or short-lived Prennial), Imagine a plant that grows wild in the gravel alongside our highways or in dry fields as being the source of a flavorful, light-amber, slightly lemony, monofloral honey. (USDA Zone 8-10), 17. *Zinnia (Zinnia elegans) Zinnias love the heat of summer and bloom when many other flowers have finished, from late July on. ‘Blue Giant’ glory-of-the-snow (Chionodoxa forbesii). The grasslike crocus foliage fades into the background, allowing the blooms to stand out like little stars. (1876), 4. Freeze individual borage blooms into ice cubes to add sparkle to a summertime glass of lemonade! Bumble bees, some of the earliest bees to emerge in spring, will appreciate this food source. Bees are so very much associated with the yellows, golds, reds and oranges—colors of the sun—that their preference for blue is a bit of a mystery. 5. (USDA Zone 5-9), Introduction: Charles Darwin – Darwin, The Effects of Cross and Self-Fertilization in the Vegetable Kingdom. Sedum spectabile*** A succulent herbaceous perennial, flowering in September, and loved by male bumblebees and butterflies. Honey bees and bumble bees are regular visitors for nectar. It’s leaves can be evergreen down to zone 6, but the best part are the beautiful and fragrant flowers. Bright-orange flowers are a butterfly magnet. Callistemon -- Bottlebrush The abundant bright red flowers of the bottlebrush are attractive to a wide range of native bee species and nectar-feeding birds. It is fun to watch honey bees hovering near one of the down-facing, blue (or pink) flowers before clinging to it briefly to gather nectar or pollen. Here are five edible and useful plants for your garden that bees will love. This includes the Blue Banded Bee, Teddy Bear Bee and the Great Carpenter Bee. Some claim they smell more like cherry pie! tall, 1 to 2 in. TIP: Bees prefer yellow and blue flowers, so factor these into your selection. Some plants like borage and lavender will flower for a very long time and the bees love them. Some emerge from hibernation as early as … The earlier bloom times are an excellent option for when food sources are limited for foraging bees. Borage flowers are most often blue, but can also be pink or white. But no, this is a lovely small plant with blue flowers. Check out this gallery of blue flowers, from earliest spring to last blooms before frost, that’ll attract and feed hosts of bees in your garden. Often planted near vegetable crops, it helps attract pollinators to your garden, which will boost your yield of tomatoes, squash and more. Among the most commonly available species are Echinops ritro (the dwarf variety ‘Veitch’s Variety’ is shown here) and E. bannaticus. Blue Banded Bees love the small flowers of the Butterfly Bush and Leafcutter Bees love to cut disks from its soft leaves for their nest materials (see arrow). Different bees are active throughout the year, so you'll need flowering plants from spring to winter. True-blue flowers are held by a black calyx. (Note that this is different from a plant often called anise hyssop, Agastache foeniculum.) What is it about the color blue that bees love? Plant the small bulbs in Autumn at about twice the depth of the bulb’s height. Light Requirements: Full sun. Two of the best are early Summer’s, (one to two feet) and the taller, slightly later-flowering, (three feet). It’s also grown as a forage crop in certain regions. Blueweed honey: https://honeybeesuite.com/vipers-bugloss-a-top-tier-honey-bee-plant/, 14. The Blue-banded bee and Teddy Bear Bee love this neat, hardy shrub that flowers most of the year. If attracting bees to your garden is important to you, skip plants such as eucalyptus, ferns, and lemongrass. (Don’t worry — they’re a lot more interested in flowers than they are in you!). With plentiful blossoms that are particularly enticing to bees, the perennial plants listed below are great for tucking into edges near your vegetable garden to attract pollinators. Plants will grow in most any soil type as long as it's well-drained — clay soil causes roots to rot. Excellent blue varieties include ‘Blue Hill’ (‘Blauhagel’), pictured, ‘May Night’ (‘Mainacht’) and ‘Caradonna’, all reaching 18-24 inches. It’s excellent for companion planting as it keeps bad bugs away as well as attracting pollinators like bees. (Shrub), Where they’re hardy, the dazzling, blue flowers of California lilac shrubs are bee magnets in Spring. Type Bulb Blooms Sky-blue in mid- to late spring Light Full to part sun Soil Well-drained Size 12 to 18 in. And if you pay attention in the fall, you can hear late-blooming plants “buzzing” with the different types of bees that are racing to get their last food supplies gathered. Its aromatic foliage makes it highly deer-resistant. (USDA Zone 4-8), 10. 4. Both honey bees and native bees love this annual flower. Hyssop honey – pg. In warm zones, where temperatures don’t drop below freezing, you can sow them in late fall for spring flowers. Every garden can use a few annuals, and love-in-a-mist is one that is easily grown from seed broadcast in a sunny spot in average soil in early Spring, as soon as the ground can be worked. Flowers For Bees on November 3 ... (Borago officinalis): This self seeding annual is a vigorous small bush to 1m with gorgeous blue/purple flowers which are also edible. Active Interest Media Holdco, Inc. © Copyright 2020. How to grow plants for bees. Type Perennial Blooms Blue mid- to late summer Light Full sun Soil Very well-drained Size 2 to 4 ft. tall, 1 to 2 ft. wide Hardiness Cold hardy USDA zones 4 to 8, ‘Black and Blue’ salvia (Salvia guaranitica). Plant in full sun or partial shade. With their lovely, blue flower spikes, both are well-behaved additions to the perennial border, long-lived, hardy and easy to grow in full sun and average soil. Hyssop – Hyssopus officinalis (Subshrub), Grown as a medicinal herb since antiquity, hyssop is native to eastern Europe and central Asia but is recorded as having arrived in North America in 1631 with the first colonists. However, they do see yellow and blue, which makes the color of snapdragons attractive to bees … Drought-tolerant, it likes full sun and flowers from mid to late Summer. Start attracting native bees with not just any flowers, but by adding native flowering plants to your garden or anywhere near your bee hotel! Annual flowers attract bees and other pollinators, of course, but who wouldn’t love less work? Although the roots are hardy to Zone 5, top growth of caryopteris is hardy only to Zone 7, therefore plants in Zones 5-6 should be mulched well in Winter. But no, this is a lovely small plant with blue flowers. And it will reseed. One important note: Bees are sensitive to chemicals, so opt for organic fertilizers and avoid toxic pesticides and herbicides. I love the powder-puff blue of the flowers, and bees seem pretty keen too! Aloes are typically pollinated by birds, but that doesn’t mean bees, hummingbirds and insects will take a pass. Choose old fashioned varieties with an easy to … Bright-orange flowers are a butterfly magnet. Borage crop (Saskatchewan): www.usask.ca/soilsncrops/conference-proceedings/previous_years/Files/97/1997docs/364.pdf. Cut spent blooms just about the closest set of leaves. Luckily big blooms like Hydrangea offer light, sky-blue petals and Irises can blossom in classic, royal-blue. Those fields are usually overrun with bees who dance between the flowers, along … Perennial plants are those that survive in the garden for a number of years. Because they have good color vision, bees flock to flowers that are blue, purple, white, and yellow. As an avid gardener, I love the variety of flowers that make their appearance in my yard. Although crocuses are great in beds and borders, you can also plant them in the lawn. Overwinter this salvia indoors by cutting it back to about 12 inches and setting it in a sunny window. Although double blooms are beautiful, bees have difficulty reaching the nectar inside the flowers. Clover is a great source of pollen for bees and is an easy wildflower to find if you leave your lawn unmown, as it often cultivates naturally in unkept lawns. And don’t worry if you see leaves emerging in Autumn; that is a perfectly normal trait of Spring-flowering muscari. (USDA Zone 4-8). Even bees are more drawn to it than any other flower colour. It’s a great rock garden plant, or, like many bulbs, it thrives under the branches of deciduous trees. You can divide large clumps in fall, and you may also find that the plant has seeded from the “bulbils” that form after the flower has faded. (USDA Zone 2-8), A tough, hardy group of beautiful perennials for early Spring, the funnel-shaped blossoms of the various lungworts are a good source of nectar for bees. What is it about the color blue that bees love? Its aromatic foliage makes it highly deer-resistant. Grow blue, purple, and yellow flowers to attract the bees. tall, 9 to 24 in. option=com_virtuemart&view=productdetails&virtuemart_product_id=5&virtuemart_category_id=8&Itemid=504&lang=it-IT, 13. Ed Reschke/Getty Images The rarest of floral colors is blue, but there are few shrubs with flowers that can be called true-blue. The earlier bloom times are an excellent option for when food sources are limited for foraging bees. The easiest and least expensive way to start borage is from seed. I love using edible borage flowers on top of salads or in desserts! Plant it out in rich soil in a sunny spot when the soil is warm and all danger of frost is past and watch it reach four feet by mid-Summer.

blue flowers bees love

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