Herb Planting For Bees


Herb planting for bees.......help bees and other pollinators, and fill your garden with scent, colour and flavour.....

There's a great variety of wild and cultivated herbs for bees out there and many herbs are among the best plants for bees.

Note!
If you are purchasing ready grown herb plants rather than growing from seed, please try to purchase from an organic supplier to ensure they have not been cultivated with the use of an insecticide that is toxic for bees - particularly a neonicotinoid. 


A List Of Herbs For Bees

Here is my list of herbs for bees - my favourites:

Borage
I have read that borage refills with nectar every 2 minutes! This is exceptionally fast. No wonder all kinds of bees love it!

Catmint (Nepeta)
(Note, cats love it too!)

Chives
Allow them to flower. You can still clip a few of the stalks for cooking.

Chives in flower.  The flowers are attractive and bees love them.

The non-flowering 'stems' can still be used in cooking.

Hyssop
Attracts bees and butterflies.

Lavender
Choose different varieties for a prolonged season.


Comfrey

Another excellent flower for bees – refills with nectar approximately every 45 minutes.

Bees may engage in nectar robbing to access the nectaries, as pictured right.

Sage
The sage family of plants are wonderful for bees and other pollinators.


Thyme
Thyme can also be used to create a small patch of lawn. The fragrance and look are beautiful. Butterflies like thymes too.

Marjoram/Origanum


Another excellent cullinary herb loved by bees and other pollinators.


Mints (Mentha)
Bees love the flowers, but I have read that some beekeepers apply mint oil diluted with water to their beehives to deter wax moth. I am aiming to place a pot of mint close to a bumblebee nest when I next find one, to see if it helps bumblebees too.

Lemon Balm
In the past, beekeepers would rub a handful of lemon balm (Melissa officinalis) inside the hive after hiving a new swarm, in order to help the swarm settle and to encourage them not to leave the hive. Rubbing hands with the leaves is also claimed to help prevent bee stings!

Fennel
Also popular with seed-eating birds and hoverflies. Find out how to grow Fennel here.

Angelica
Pretty herb loved by a variety of bees and hoverflies.

Above: Common carder bee on Wild Bergamot

Wild Bergamot (Monarda fistulosa)

Often referred to as 'bee balm'.  Long tongued bees especially, enjoy this pretty herb.
There are also cultivated varieties of Monarda available, which are also enjoyed by bees.

Woundworts
Quite pretty flowers loved by bees, in appearance, clightly resembling the nettle. I have hedge woundwort in our border, but I should warn you its root system spreads very quickly, and the fragrance is not very pleasant, but the bees love it.

Betony
Another great bee and butterfly plant.

Myrtle
Gorgeous shrub loved by bees and other insects.

Rosemary
Excellent early food source for bees.





Herbs are always in fashion in gardens. 

You may or may not have space for a large kitchen herb garden, but most people can squeeze in a few herbs at least somewhere, even if they only have a yard, balcony, hanging basket or doorstep for pots. 

You could create a container herb garden, or a window herb garden.

Of course, herbs not only help pollinators, they have many uses for humans too: cooking, medicinal uses, fragrance, not to mention their beauty and verstility in the garden.

Also, a pot of herbs makes a lovely gift and can be prepared easily at home. Home-made gifts such as these are increasingly appreciated - and not only by gardeners.  This is a great way to help bees and give an environmentally friendly gift to a neighbour.


Go from Herb Planting For Bees to one of these links to find out about more about planting for bees:

Bee plant lists
Take a look at these different lists of plants for bees. including wildflowers, garden plants, trees, shrubs and even fruit and vegetables!


Plants for problem places
Even in conditions of clay soil, drought and shade, there are plants you can include in your garden to attract bees. Go from Herb Planting For Bees

Create a bee garden!
Some great handy tips for creating a garden to attract bees.


Free Plants!
It needn't cost a fortune to create a bee garden! Take a look at these ideas for getting free (or nearly free) garden plants!


Bee pollination
What makes bees such excellent pollinators, and how important are they?


Save the bees!
Here are 10 simple things you can do to help the bees. Why not share these tips with your friends?

Link back from Herb Planting for Bees to Home page



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Planning And Planting A Bee Friendly Garden





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