Tuesday, September 9, 2014

NATURE NOTES and GOOD FENCES

Today it seemed appropriate to combine two memes, "Nature Notes and Thursday's "Good Fences".  Their links can be found at the bottom of this post.


I have been sharing a lot of photographs lately from the Norfolk Botanical Garden We visited the garden back in July while visiting family.  


Those bamboo stems are used as a nesting station for native bees.



The sign nearby reads: "These bamboo stems are for nesting use by native bees.  Unlike the European honey bee, the vast majority of native bees are 'solitary' bees and do not live in hives or colonies.  Approximately 30% of solitary bees (around 1,200 species) in north America are tunnel nesters.  This site will provide a dry, warm site and provide protection from predators and parasites.

Most species of solitary bees will build dividing walls with materials such as mud or leaf pulp to create separate brood cells.  Leafcutter bees use their mandibles to cut particular sizes and shapes from leaves and flower petals to fit different parts of the brood cell, lining the entire cell.  Before she closes each cell, the bee will mix nectar and pollen to form a loaf of 'bee bread' that the merging larva will feed on until it emerges as a bee and forage for itself.

Native bees are critical to pollinating our agricultural and ornamental plants - they are actually far more effective than honey bees.  To help protect and support our native bees reduce or eliminate the use of insecticides in your yard, plant "pollinator friendly" plants and provide some undisturbed nesting areas."



There is a very interesting article on bees by UC Berkeley at this site.

I also found the blog of a bee keeper in Richmond, Virginia, which you can link to here.

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I am linking with Nature Notes and Good Fences with my thanks to Michelle and Theresa for hosting these fun and very educational memes.

35 comments:

Ginny said...

Really interesting! I guess this kind of bee does not make honey. Do you also have honey bees?

Cloudia said...

Wonderful info about bees I never knew!



ALOHA from Honolulu
ComfortSpiral
=^..^= . <3 . >< } } (°>

ladyfi said...

How wonderful to see initiatives to help the bees!

Elephant's Child said...

Love your meme mix. Clever, informative and a visual treat as well.

Terri said...

Very interesting- I've never seen bamboo used like that before.

EG CameraGirl said...

Thanks for showing us the bamboo the bees use for housing. Fascinating!

Linda Kay said...

I have never heard of this type of bee, I just assumed they were all hive insects. And how clever to put these bamboo pieces together to provide a habitat for them. Thanks for the lessons!

Stephanie said...

Interesting info on thr bamboo usage, lovely images. Love thr new header photo as well.

Willow said...

Interesting info about solitary bees, thanks for sharing it.

Rose said...

Very interesting...going to the bee keeper's blog now.

TexWisGirl said...

how interesting! thanks for that (and for good fences, too!)

schmidleysscribblins.com said...

Folks in the US who worry about the demise of the European honey bee owing to colony collapse should be comforted by the presence of our own native bees. I have many of the around here...mostly carpenter bees who tunnel into our porch. On the other hand all the bees are killed by certain toxins used to spray crops. Why we try to eat organic foods where possible.

William Kendall said...

I had no idea bees could be solitary.

John "By Stargoose And Hanglands" said...

Interesting stuff. Thanks for the links.

Debbie said...

a trip to any commercial garden always yields a lot of blog material!!

interesting bee info and i like the fence!!!

Carver said...

Very interesting information about the fence and encouraging bees. Also love seeing the flowering landscape beyond the fence.

Felicia said...

Wow that is very interesting. Thanks for sharing.

Betsy Adams said...

Hi There, We have a small windchime hanging on our deck... This summer I have watched some little bees using that windchime as their 'home' --and nesting area... I had no idea that bees did that --and now that you have posted about it, it is true. How neat!!!!

Hugs,
Betsy

Mascha said...

This is popular with us too. From this, the Germans build such insect hotels, what you saw in Germany last year.
I see many wild bees in my yard and garden, I'm glad, that they are so many again.
Have a nice day :-)

SweetMarie said...

This is really interesting! Nice pics too!
Hope your week is great!

Marie said...

Bees are so important, and I am thrilled you did this post. I get so upset about people using insecticides. I had no idea native bees were more effective pollinators than honey bees. That was good to learn. Wonderful post!

diane b said...

That is a good idea for the native bees.

SeagullSuzie said...

Love bees, can't understand why people are 1, afraid of them and shriek 2, don't even seem to notice them or how wonderful they are. Many thanks for a lovely interesting post.

Leora said...

I have lots of bees on my sedum flowers. There seem to be two different kinds. I should educate myself so I know the difference! Lovely photos.

Gail Dixon said...

Fascinating information on these bees...I had no idea! I am always learning something interesting from you. Hope you have a great day!

pattisjarrett said...

This is a great project for the bees at NBG. What better place?

Donna@Gardens Eye View said...

I added a bee house for native bees...

Ni de Aqui, Ni de Alla said...

Great pictures! I also visit the NBG a lot, since I live close by :) Thanks for sharing the bees website links.

Karen S. said...

Wow, that is interesting and quite impressive the nesting station. Such good information about bees, and lovely photos too. I enjoy all your photos from there.

John @ Sinbad and I on the Loose said...

I did not know that about bees. Now I am wanting to put together a bamboo condominium for them.

LV said...

THANKS FOR SHARING THIS INTERESTING AND INFORMATIVE POST. I LOVE HONEY.

Ida said...

That is so cool. Recently this summer we had a Mason Bee show up and lay it's eggs in my mom's Flag Pole opening. I love that they put out the bamboo for the bees.

Alica said...

Wooden split rail fences are some of my favorite. I also enjoyed the info about the bees!

Rambling Woods said...

I want to put up nesting materials for solitary bees. Wonderful post for Nature Notes Denise...Michelle

Kay said...

This is so interesting. I've never heard of bamboo being used for a nesting station. We do need our bees.