Easy ways you can help bees
You don’t have to be a beekeeper to help keep bees and their natural environments thriving. Infact, there are several simple ways you can play your part…
bees for our bars
A third of global food relies on pollination and honeybees play the biggest role in pollination out of any other insect. Sadly, the last 10 years has seen one third of the UK’s honeybee population disappear with 35 of our native bee species close to extinction.
At Eat Natural we rely on bees to make several of our appetising ingredients including some tree nuts, coconuts, cranberries and our juicy jumbo sultanas.
plant a pot
You don’t need stacks of space to give bees a home. A plant pot filled with flowering herbs, summer perennials or spring bulbs can provide bees with a healthy habitat. In the warmer months, try planting summer herbs such as rosemary, fennel and chives. In the autumn, dahlia, chrysanthemum and perennial sunflowers will flourish, whilst spring is an ideal time for plants such as primrose and hellebores.
plant a flowering tree
If you’ve got more space to play with, add bee-friendly plants in the borders of manicured lawns. In the spring, crocus provides food and shelter for bees, whilst wallflowers don’t just add colour to your garden, they attract various species of bee too.
Space for a flowering tree? These provide bees and other insects with a foraging area equivalent to one acre of land! Trees that flower either side of summer, such as witch hazel, or winter-flowering cherry varieties are ideal to give bees foods when it might otherwise be sparse.
a walk on the wild side
Section off a patch of garden and allow it to grow naturally. The weeds and other plants that grow here such as dandelions, clover and daisies, will provide a habitat for bees.
To allow other areas of garden or outdoor space to flourish, try to leave longer periods between mowing the grass, and when you do mow, raise the height of mower blades so low-flowering plants aren’t disturbed.
help bees stay hydrated
In the warmer months especially, bees need water just like us humans. Leave a shallow tray of water outside with a selection of stones for bees and other insects to rest on. Avoid letting bird baths dry up too, and instead keep them filled with water. If you’re outside watering the plants, leave a leaky hose lying on the grass so insects can enjoy damp ground.
If you fancy going a step further, you could even introduce a pond – no matter how small – for pollinating insects to lap up water all year round.
build a home
The 250 species of British bees need a safe shelter so they can thrive. Devote a corner of your garden or outdoor space to creating a bee sanctuary; piling up dead stalks, straw, soil and leaves provides a home for bees and several other pollinating insects. Go a step further and bundle together straw, bamboo canes and earth to invite pollinating insects to set up camp!