Bees & Plants
Bees, plants and their relationship
It is widely known that our bee population is under threat and that honeybees, bumblebees and solitary bees are all in decline. Our own population growth directly impacts that of the bees as the spread of intensive agriculture destroys the bees’ flower-rich habitats, threatening them and the important contribution they make to our lives.
Our gardens are therefore fast becoming an alternative source of food for many of our bee species and these spaces are crucial if our native bees are to survive and thrive. Mixed planting will provide food for all species of bee and ‘Plants for Bees’ presents a comprehensive list of which plants are most suited to which bees and gives expert guidance on the level of importance of each.
A simple key system allows the reader to quickly identify which plants are best suited to which bee and is supported by beautiful photographs of plants and bees. Highly informative and extremely useful for experts and hobbyists alike, ‘Plants for Bees’ provides all the information you need to plant a bee-friendly garden.
This very recent title clearly shows how to create or adapt a garden to attract and nurture bees. It includes how bees forage, what bees you can expect in your garden and what plants are best for them What varieties of plants are best suited to provide for their needs How the gardener can offer and maintain a bee friendly garden A gazetteer of selected bee-friendly plants arranged by type of plants in seasonal sub-sections. Maureen Little is a professional garden designer and beekeeper, so writes with a great deal of authority. Extensively illustrated with colour plates.
Established along with European settlers, honey bees are an essential part of the landscape. Yet, how do we define a honey bee? And how does the honey bee accomplish the many tasks that aid not only the survival of the colony but our own as well? In Honey-Maker:
• How honey bees set up house, manage a vegetarian lifestyle, and make a beeline
• What honey bees do to warm and cool the beehive
• How honey bees make beeswax, honey, and bee bread
• Why honey bees are in our gardens and how they tell other bees the way to get there
• How the honey bee is related to other insects-and to us
“I didn’t think there was another way to write a book about bees …. This one should be on your shelf.” – Kim Flottum, Editor, Bee Culture Magazine
Bees play a vital and irreplaceable role in pollinating our flowers, fruits and vegetables. The more bees in your garden the healthier, more productive and more pleasant a place it will be. Yet bees are declining rapidly and many people, even if they do not wish to keep bees themselves, are asking what can be done on an individual basis to help the bee, This book is a response to that request. It will demonstrate in one accessible volume how each of us can play our part in providing a bee-friendly environment, no matter how much gardening space and / or time we may have.
This book is a reliable and fascinating guide to one o f Borneo’s natural wonders – the diversity o f honey bees, their intriguing societies and their adaptations to the complex tropical environment. The admirable harmony of their social life , the precision of their combs and the richness of their honey stores are described, as well as the honey bee’s defence strategies against strong bears, fast flying birds and minute mites.
An array of unique, spectacular photographs allows the reader to visit the giant honey bees (Apis dorsata) in the canopy of the highest Koompassia trees and witness painful bee stings penetrating deeper and deeper into the skin. Unique in the animal kingdom are magnificent assemblies of thousands of drone s which, far from the safety of their nests, circle high in the air waiting for the arrival of a single virgin queen. The out standing taste and quality of honey of indigenous Asian bees is acknowledged and its unjustified degrading by honey standards of the western Apis mellifera is exposed. Sustainable keeping of indigenous bees for honey production in Asia must gain more momentum! The knowledge and aware ness disseminated by this book will undoubtedly help to protect native honey bees and their habitats in Borneo and elsewhere!
Michael Duncan, a beekeepers for over 60 years has written a quite exceptional and unique text, published as a volume with both illustrations and text in his own free flowing hand. Starting the craft in Birmingham in 1947 he has since 1982 kept bees in North Devon. His concern for our world is clearly stated in his words. We live in an ailing, troubled, treadmill of a world. But another does exist parallel to it – largely unnoticed. A world of light, colour, sweetness, tranquility: of external rhythms and harmonies. Step over into it each day, however briefly. Hold it in some secluded corner of the heart. Saving Our Bees Can Save Our Sanity.
This volume has colour photography alongside practical information on over 300 plants – and is the only A – Z of plants that list those specifically attractive to bees. The beekeeping facts and figures are supplied by Ted Hooper NDB while the plant information is given by Mike Taylor a consultant to the Royal Horticultural Society.
Essential reading for the serious candidate who wishes to investigate this relationship further. While mainly of interest to beekeepers, gardeners, biologists, agriculturalists & horticulturalists will find much of interest to them. Awarded an Apimondia Bronze Medal.
The honeybee is a wonderful example of adaptation. In this it resembles all forms of life, but because it is an extremist its adaptations are striking. The honeybee’s waggle dance, with which forager bees share information about the locations of new patches of flowers, is unsurpassed among animal communication systems in its capacity for coding precise yet flexible messages. Honeybee workers display an extraordinarily elaborate division of labor by age, switching their labor roles at least four times as they grow older. When a honeybee colony needs a new home, several hundred scout bees comb some 100 square kilometres of forest, discover a few dozen possible nest cavities, and harmoniously choose the best dwelling place through a sort of plebiscite. In winter, the thousands of honeybees in a colony form a tight, well-insulated cluster and pool their metabolic heat fuelled by about 20 kilograms of honey stores-to keep warm despite subfreezing temperatures, a method of winter survival which is unique among insects. The honeybee, then, has an extremely elaborate social life. It is therefore an unusually rewarding subject for eco-logical studies of social behaviour.
Agriculture Handbook No. 496, United States Department of Agriculture. This publication reports research involving pesticides. It does not contain recommendations for their use, nor does it imply that the uses discussed here have been registered. All uses of pesticides must be registered by appropriate State and/or Federal agencies before they can be recommended.This reprint of the 1976 United States Department of Agriculture Handbook is welcome. While its 410 pages covers many plants not native in the UK – it will prove to be an important source for any beekeeper who is considering pollination as a source of income.