Anyone have any experience with Oregon Grape Holly (Mahonia Aquifolium) which is neither a grape nor a holly. It's got the advantage that it (according to the growers) does well in partial shade with attractive flowers. Do the bees work it?
most Oregon Grapes grow in heavy wooded areas - from what ive seen is that the Bumblebees work them far faster then the honeybees
but if the growing area had head room below the tree limbs, and the hives were placed in the woods rather then on the edge - they might work them...
id say try it with a few hives and watch the flowers
either way at the end of the season - pick all the "grapes" and make jelly!!!!!!!
i can never make enough of that !!!!
We have huge splats of it in the foothills around here... I don't recall ever noting bees working it, but that doesn't necessarily mean they don't. I've found a good way to check when considering buying stock is to go to your local garden center and watch what the bees are working.
what we did in school was put window netting over plants flowers and noted what insects perfered them - something to try but i would just put a hive in the area and test the plan - if nothing else they will find another food source that they prefer - good luck with it - keep us posted on your findings - would be cool if they did make a crop of honey from them
I live in a mountainous area with a lot of native Oregon Grape. I have seen honey bees on it, but I think that we have more attractive plants for honey bees when it is blooming. I see more of our native bumble bees on the Oregon Grape.
Oregon grape is a lower growing plant around here also. Salal and other plants tend to hide it. That may make it harder for the honey bee to find it and the blooms. Salal is another thing that I have seen honey bees on, but it doesn't seem to be a favorite.
Now real Holly is another thing. One of the honey bees favorites.
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