Bee Garden Basics: Types of Bees and Useful Tips For Making A Successful Bee Garden

bee garden basics

Bee garden is a concept for attracting bees into your garden and by doing this, increasing your pollination success rate and increased yields. but before focusing your efforts on making a bee garden, you need to know about different types of bees.

There are nearly 20,000 known species of bees. But here we will focus on 5 main types.

Types of Bees:

Here are 5 most popular types of garden bees

Bumble Bee (Bombus ternarius):

bumblebee gardening

Bumblebees are larger in size (10 to 23 mm in length). They have round bodies covered with soft hair making them appear and feel fuzzy. Because of the buzzing sound, they are called bumblebee.

They build their nests on the ground. Some species, such as Bombus impatiens, are used to pollinate greenhouse crops. Like their relatives the honeybees, bumblebees feed on nectar.

Honey Bee (Apis mellifera):

types of bees honey bee

The first distinguishing feature of honey bees is they can produce and store honey and can create nest made of wax. This European species is used for pollination and for honey, propolis, and beeswax production. Bees are 10 to 15 mm in length and colonies survive winter on stored honey.

Leafcutter Bee (Megachile sp.):

types of bees leafcutter bees

Leafcutter and mason bees are solitary. They are 3 to 20 mm in length, and usually nest in cavities. Leafcutter bees use bits of leaves and flowers to wrap brood cells for their young, whereas Mason bees use soil.

Blue Orchard Bee (Osmia lignaria):

Blue orchard bees gardening

The blue orchard bee is a mason bee (11 to 15 mm in length) that uses mud to divide its brood cells. Bee belongs to the same family as leafcutter bees and is an important fruit pollinator.

Mining Bee (Andrena sp):

types of bees mining bees

Mining bees are from 8mm to 17 mm in length. There are around 1300 species in this group. All species nest in the ground. Some species are important apple pollinators and can move more pollen than honey bees!

Basic Rules of Bee Gardening

When gardening for bees, here are a few general rules of thumb:

  • Choose a range of flower shapes and colors to attract the most bee species. Bumblebees can easily collect pollen from complex flowers, while smaller bees appreciate simple flower shapes and a flat place to land.
  • Plant season-long blooms to support garden bees from early spring until fall.
  • Provide areas of undisturbed ground or vegetation for nesting sites.
  • Bees and flowers have evolved in tandem, so make sure to choose non-hybrid natives.
  • Plant in masses for efficient pollen collection. Sunny areas are most attractive.
  • Avoid using pesticides. Even some organic mixtures can harm insects.
  • Provide a muddy area or shallow trough for water.

Hope you like the article. you can read more about bees and other pollinators in this article.

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