I know it isn't much land compared to what bees will actually use. But I have a 9 acre pasture of grass/weeds/clover. In this area Everything has stopped blooming and my bees are already starving.
Does anybody know of a financially viable species of flower that'll bloom in fall, and be non toxic to any grazers? You can buy clover seed, lupins, etc, but I don't know what'd work for this time of year. It's relatively high elevation and there is already snow in the surrounding mountaintops, I'm in the valley.
I noticed two months ago they were working pumpkins in my own yard, so I would expect they'd use the source if it was the only thing available.
Obviously you are now feeding them like the dickens!
I don't know about your area, but is it possible to get in late blooming shrubs or vines for the fence line? How about alfalfa? Would a bee bee tree or sumac live up there? Or are they hazardous? Are there any trees that may have something later in the year that would live up there? If you have a nursery in the area they may have something for you. Ours isn't bad he has done some studying. I don't think I helped you much. Hopefully a couple ideas. Sorry. I've been blessed with trumpet creeper that grows on main street a block from my yard. My wife says that it normally blooms all year long, it had a dormant period this year and is still going strong in round two. David
Have you thought of phacelia? I think they will bloom 3 weeks after being sown but if you have snow not far, it may just be too late for anything
Hi again Dennis.
I found this, it might help.
They may have some time frames for you if you email them.
All the books say it isn't economically feasible to plant crops specifically for bee fodder, but that said, it's certainly worthwile keeping land under cultivation or growing self-sustaining nectar producing weeds as opposed to letting it grow up to bushes.
There are lots of plants that can be grown that provide both bee fodder and animal or human fodder. Your agricultural extension office can help here. I've got some land that isn't doing anything and I'm planning on putting in Alsike clover next year. I'm also trying to convince the guy that hays our fields to seed them down to alfalfa- great bee forage and good for cow feed.
Other stuff that grows like weeds are cat mint, oregano, and in particular, borage which grows like no tommorow, blooms all summer long and into the fall. Many people grow it up in Canada for the seed from which a valuable oil is produced.
9 acres may be just a small fraction of the area that your bees will forage on, but they'll certainly not overlook it if it has good forage on it.