Bee-Friendly Gardens

We have tried to overwinter bees for the last five years with varying success. Sometimes we can overwinter a few, but most of the time they disappear during the cold months.

Usually, we just order new nucs (small honeybee colonies) from local bee keepers for delivery every spring.

I decorated our hives last year in hopes that the bees would find them more hospitable.

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Some Día de los Muertos images.

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An homage to Swamp Cabbage.

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Some more folkloric inspired designs.

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Frida.

These bees were all buzzing last May.  It is frustrating to not overwinter them, but we do feel like we are at least trying to do our part.  I do know that when we do have bees, the garden goes NUTS.

When I saw a The Bee-Friendly Garden by Kate Frey and Gretchen LeBuhn at Blogging for BooksI had to request a copy.

bee friendly garden

I have a few books on pollinator friendly plants, but this book by Frey and LeBuhn is the most informative.  Not only does it list bee-friendly plants by regions, but the book also contains descriptions of all the different pollinators from honey bees to mason bees.   The book is full of beautiful photographs and will make you want to become a steward for all pollinators.  Besides this most worthy goal, bee gardens also do the following:

  • contain a gorgeous variety of flowers
  • bloom continuously throughout the seasons
  • are organic, pesticide-free, and ecologically sustainable
  • develop healthy and fertile soil
  • attract birds, butterflies, and other beneficial insects
  • increase the quantity of your fruit and vegetable harvest (I can certainly attest to this one!)
  • improve the quality, flavor, and size of your produce

Although we have tried to plant bee-friendly plants (like different varieties of rain trees which bloom in the fall and the spring), I know that I will be going back to this book as an important resource as the garden and flowerbeds take shape this year.

Publisher blurb for The Bee-Friendly Garden:

In The Bee-Friendly Garden, award-winning garden designer Kate Frey and bee expert Gretchen LeBuhn provide everything you need to know to create a dazzling garden that helps both the threatened honeybee and our own native bees. No matter how small or large your space, and regardless of whether you live in the city, suburbs, or country, just a few simple changes to your garden can fight the effects of colony collapse disorder and the worldwide decline in bee population that threatens our global food chain.

Illustrated with spectacular full-color photos, The Bee-Friendly Garden debunks myths about bees, explains seasonal flower progression, and provides detailed instructions for nest boxes and water features. From “super blooming” flowers to regional plant lists and plants to avoid, The Bee-Friendly Garden is an essential tool for every gardener who cares about the planet and wants to make their yard a welcoming habitat for nature’s most productive pollinator.

I received a complimentary copy of this book  from Blogging for Books for this review.  All opinions, exclamations, gushing and rants are my own.

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My Favorite Reads

Eat, Pray, Love
Running with Scissors
SantaLand Diaries
Me Talk Pretty One Day
Angela's Ashes
Naked
Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim
Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly
My Life in France
Julie and Julia: 365 Days, 524 Recipes, 1 Tiny Apartment Kitchen: How One Girl Risked Her Marriage, Her Job, and Her Sanity to Master the Art of Living
Garlic and Sapphires: The Secret Life of a Critic in Disguise
A Homemade Life: Stories and Recipes from My Kitchen Table
Tender at the Bone: Growing Up at the Table
The Liars' Club
Code Name Verity
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The Shoemaker's Wife
The Secret Book of Frida Kahlo: A Novel
Brother of the More Famous Jack
Burying the Honeysuckle Girls


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