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  1. #81
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Fort Worth, TX, USA
    Posts
    1,766

    Default Re: Bees favorite plant

    Any of the mints - spearmint, oregano for sure. And holly blooms are worth braving my bee-eating dog for. (I had to bring him in)
    Time to be a gypsy again, 2014 will be my prep year, my bees want a better area with actual rainfall.

  2. #82
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Sudbury,Ontario,Canada
    Posts
    127

    Default Re: Bees favorite plant

    Fireweed or it's scientific name of Epilobium angustifolium is one plant that I
    have yet to approach in the summer without seeing some type of bee on it.
    It grows wild where I live in large clusters. I also read that fireweed honey is
    produced in great quantities in some areas of western Canada and northwestern
    US and is considered a premium monofloral. It's also amber colored. I'm not sure
    if it's bees favorite plant but I do know they like it a lot. Anyone who has seen
    these growing know what I mean.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Epilobium_angustifolium

    It's one plant from a dozen that I plan to buy seeds for when I finally get into
    bee keeping to create a flower garden. At least, it will grow back every year
    on it's own after it's established.

  3. #83

    Default Re: Bees favorite plant

    Quote Originally Posted by Omie View Post
    What a beautiful garden! I have a chicken wire fence around my vegetable garden to keep Thumper out (although the groundhogs dug under it), and it's 10' tall with netting above the chicken wire to keep Bambi out (although the deer still jump over that). But it's nothing like yours. Now I know what mine should look like! Is that electric fence or barbed wire along the top?
    Greg Whitehead, Ten Mile, TN
    Blog - http://gregsbees.blogspot.com/

  4. #84
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Roscommon Mi USA
    Posts
    37

    Default Re: Bees favorite plant

    If there is a poppy blooming my bees are in it.

  5. #85
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Maplewood, Minnesota, USA
    Posts
    18

    Default Re: Bees favorite plant

    Alsike clover and white clover are good. Honey bees can't deal with the depth of the red clover blossom.

  6. #86
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Lakeland, FL USA
    Posts
    785

    Default Re: Bees favorite plant

    .

    What an incredible thread.

    I really appreciate all the tips.

    My wife is going to think I'm insane for experimenting with some of these, but what wife doesn't think their husband is insane already? Might as well be over something like this.

    Someone tried to post this link earlier, but it was incorrect. It's a wealth of info:


    Dr. Stashenko’s list of honeybee plants

    .

  7. #87
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Tulsa, OK
    Posts
    85

    Default Re: Bees favorite plant

    Anybody know anything about Paulownia and Korean Evodia (Bee Bee Tree) trees for honey production? And also, is Korean Lespedeza a good bee plant?

  8. #88
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Marysville, WA
    Posts
    476

    Default Re: Bees favorite plant

    I plant alot of the mints, lavenders and in my opinion their all time favorite borage.

    Mike
    Beekeeper? Shoot, my bees keep me!
    100 hives in Western Wa State

  9. #89
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    florence sc usa
    Posts
    137

    Default Re: Bees favorite plant

    what about dandelion? how long are they in bloom?

  10. #90
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Bucksport, Maine
    Posts
    177

    Default Re: Bees favorite plant

    Dandelions are an extremely important plant for bees. They get pollen and nectar in large quantities from them. I tell everyone I can how important they are. I mow mine in a staggered fashion; leaving some to bloom and some to try again. I’m not sure how long they last if left alone but it is long enough to give bees a great start in the spring. If there is a patch fairly near a hive it will be really buzzing on good days. If you like making splits or you buy package bees then peak dandelion time is a great time to do these things.
    Dave - PM me if you are interested in natural beekeeping in Hancock County Maine.
    http://www.davesbees.com

  11. #91
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    florence sc usa
    Posts
    137

    Default Re: Bees favorite plant

    thanks dave, i have a good patch in my backyard and the bees are on them a lot. i built a swarm box and placed it in their flight path w/wax striped top bars and a little lemongrass oil. i'm hopeful. i also placed a jar of sugar water on top.

  12. #92
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Lavaca county, Texas
    Posts
    497

    Default Re: Bees favorite plant

    Borage is popular with my bees. When I lived in Denver, they were all over the Russian Sage bush. Horsemint, a wild relative Lemonmint, is always well visited by my bees. But the two hands down favorites seem to be: 1.) Chinese Tallow tree -- supposedly good for wax building. 2.) Purple tansy.

    Last year, I planted a wildflower mix that included purple tansy. It was covered with bees. And, it survived the worst drought in Texas' recorded history, and bloomed for almost 3 months without water, and in our ungodly hot summer!

    This year, I bought three pounds of tansy seed and planted it in early January. (It would need to be planted in the late fall in climes north of mine.) It is already coming up strongly, but no blooms yet. It has strong taproots, and does a great job breaking up the soil, as I understand it.

    My advice is this: Try different things, and if it grows well for YOU, and the bees like it, plant some more. The trick is to try and find different things that bloom at different times, so there's always something available.

    Good luck!
    Summer

  13. #93
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Bucksport, Maine
    Posts
    177

    Default Re: Bees favorite plant

    I say if the bees are in your yard they can be in your hive. If they can find you flowers, they can find your hive. Good luck.
    Dave - PM me if you are interested in natural beekeeping in Hancock County Maine.
    http://www.davesbees.com

  14. #94
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    florence sc usa
    Posts
    137

    Default Re: Bees favorite plant

    thanks Summer, i've started looking at blooms everywhere i go now trying to see what the bees like.

  15. #95
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    florence sc usa
    Posts
    137

    Default Re: Bees favorite plant

    thanks Dave, for the reassurance.

  16. #96
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Auburn, NY
    Posts
    112

    Default Re: Bees favorite plant

    +1 for borage, brassicas, clovers, milkweeds, & mints. of course goldenrod and asters, which are fall staples here. add also willow (in bloom now and clouded with a diversity of pollinators I never knew were out there), burdock (long flowering season), and a little garden plant that looks like a mini-borage called Pulmonaria (girls are spending a lot of time on it right now).

  17. #97
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    DeKalb Co. Alabama U.S.A.
    Posts
    232

    Default Re: Bees favorite plant

    Perennial - my red flowering quince has been in bloom for more than a month. Even with dandelion everywhere...and fruit trees now in bloom as well, you can walk near the quince and hear "the buzz".
    Annual - my fall garden greens are still in bloom after 2 weeks. Normally, I sow approx. 20X60 patch. Next fall, I think I'll make it a half acre!

    CC

  18. #98
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Jefferson Co., WV, USA
    Posts
    157

    Default Re: Bees favorite plant

    In our herb garden the bees love the thai basils, catnip and catmint and get a lot of orange pollen from our male asparagus, they really climb over the asparagus. WVMJ

  19. #99
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Essex IA USA
    Posts
    32

    Default Re: Bees favorite plant

    Stock Seed Farms has developed a "Stock's Pollinator Mix" of 40 species. I have ordered 2 lbs to plant this spring.

    Stock Seed Farms has put together this mixture with annual and perennial wildflowers plus legumes for use in creating pollinator habitat. One key to providing good pollinator habitat is to make sure there are blooms from early spring all the way through late fall. This mixture will produce diverse colors and flower shapes making it attractive to many species of pollinators. Another recommendation is to plant this mixture close to flowering trees and/or native grasses to provide additional blooms, nesting sites, and shelter. Our Prairie 7 or Prairie 3 Plus prairie grass mixtures work well for that purpose. Seed this mixture in mid spring. The legumes, annual wildflowers, and many perennials will bloom the first year with increased blooms the second and third year as perennials establish themselves.


    http://www.stockseed.com/wildflowers...ay.asp?pid=626

  20. #100
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Maumee, OH
    Posts
    55

    Default Re: Bees favorite plant

    Pussy willow tress my bees work them really good and it's one of the 1st pollen's around here,Toledo Ohio
    Put your ear against a hive in January when it is -20 degrees. Hearing the hum is priceless to me.

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