10 Plants That Bees Love
Helping make the world a better place can be as simple as planting a flower or vegetable in your garden or even a balcony. Bees love to forage; they are always looking for nectar-rich flowers.
There are lots of everyday plants that will entice bees into even the smallest garden. Having wildflowers in your green space is beautiful to look at and helps the bees and pollinators by providing them with food and a place to rest.
It turns out that feeding the bees has wonderful benefits for us humans, too. We’ve chosen ten plants (out of hundreds) that bees adore, which you will love having in your garden.
1. Lavender – The purple Lavender flower, full of nectar and pollen, is an absolute favourite of the bees. Planting Lavender in a cluster or group gives your garden a burst of colour and a heavenly scent during winter. Freshly picked as an arrangement or dried to make scented bags, let the wonderful smell of Lavender fill your home.
2. Borage – Bees and Borage are best friends! This beautiful, easy-growing plant with bright blue flowers is a must in any bee-friendly garden. Known as a medicinal herb with edible leaves and flowers, Borage has been used for centuries to treat illness and is even grown by beekeepers to encourage honey production.
3. Merigold – Planting Marigolds in your garden next to your vegetables can be very beneficial for the pollination of your crops, as well as adding a boost of colour. This bright gold flower is a good source of pollen and irresistible to foraging bees while also driving off those nasty plant-damaging bugs.
4. Rosemary – Bees love this versatile, easy-growing plant that flowers from winter to summer. Rosemary is commonly grown as a shrub or a hedge; Rosemary has brilliant blue flowers that are particularly attractive to bees and have an aromatic smell. Add to your cooking for a flavour boost; Rosemary is especially complimentary with lamb dishes.
5. Basil – Basil is a highly aromatic herb that grows very well in pots on the window sill or in a garden during summer’s hot, dry heat. If you leave your basil plant to flower, small white to light purple tubular-shaped flowers will appear, attracting foraging bees for both nectar and pollen. Used widely in Italian recipes or freshly chopped, basil transforms simple dishes into culinary delights.
6. Sunflowers – Sunflowers are giant, brightly coloured plants which remind us of hot summer days. Sunflowers are the show-offs in the garden and look beautiful when lined up in a row with large flower heads. They are an excellent source of nectar and pollen for bees. Dried Sunflower seeds add texture and crunch to your dishes and are a nutritional snack for kids’ lunchboxes.
7. Lemon Tree – selection of lemon varieties that flower all year round will keep your local bee population and household well-fed. Lemon trees can be grown in pots or as shrubs in the garden, and the delicate white flowers look great and attract foraging bees.
8. Wild Geranium – Geranium’s most interesting health benefits may include its ability to lower stress levels, reduce inflammation, strengthen the immune system, ease digestion, and improve kidney, skin, and hair health. It has potent antiseptic, antibacterial, and anti-fungal properties, which help heal wounds faster.
9. Clover – another super plant that bees are crazy about. Clover fixes nitrogen that feeds grasses and reduces the need for artificial fertilizers. Since clover helps maintain soil moisture and suppresses certain other weeds, clover lawns require less water and herbicide: all good news for the environment.
10. Black Eyed Susan – has been found to have immuno-stimulant activity similar to Echinacea (also bee favourite). Black-eyed Susans have diuretic properties. The stem is an effective treatment for those suffering from high blood pressure, and the entire plant treats ulcers and bodily swelling.
Why plant for bees?
If you’re planting a bee-friendly garden, you will not only be benefiting your local bee population with an excellent source of food in one spot. You will also be supplying your household with some added food options throughout the cooler season in UAE.
Planting a bee-friendly garden is a wonderfully rewarding experience; the bees and environment will love you, and your garden will be a visual array of colours and tastes.