Bees and pollination




Without bees many plants will not produce fruit well.

Encourage bees to your garden by growing plenty of flowering plants.  Aim to have something always

in flower. Flowers that bees love need not be fussy or water guzzlers - many are very tough and hardy.

 

In late spring - early summer there is usually an abundance of flowers.  In other seasons they may not

be quite so easy to find.

 

Letting some herbs and vegetables go to seed will provide flowers for bees and other beneficial

insects as well as giving seeds for next year's planting. 


Look for plants from the following lists.  Seasons vary from year to year, so be prepared to find

flowering times varying too. (The flowering times below are for the eastern suburbs of Melbourne.)



 

 Autumn - Winter

dahlias (single forms)

rosemary

calendula

winter irises

nasturtium

bush marigold (Tagetes

lemmonii)

snow gum

red hot pokers

thryptomene

feverfew

seaside daisy

many native plants

tree dahlias

correas

salvias



 Early Spring

Japanese and cherry

plums

jonquils

snowflakes

calendulas

winter flowering lavender

(Lavendula dentata)

grevilleas

thryptomene

perennial wallflower

borage

prostrate rosemary

seaside daisy

nasturtiums





A dish of fresh water will keep bees happy on hot days,

but is best kept away from children, pets and walkways.





Bees where you don't want them?

Bees swarm in spring.  Sometimes they settle in

unsuitable places - like the roof of your house.

Call a bee keeper as soon as you notice the bees.


Bee keepers are often happy to collect swarms,

and that way you don't have to have them killed.
 
Try:        www.amazingbees.com.au


No zucchinis on your plants??


If you don't have many bees in your garden you

may find that your zucchinis and pumpkins are not

setting many fruit.  You may need to pollinate the

flowers yourself.


Look closely at the zucchini flowers.


Some grow on a long stem. Inside the flower is a

yellow rod covered in pollen. These are 'male'

flowers.


Other flowers have a small round bulge at their

base. These are 'female' flowers. The bulge will

grow into a zucchini – but only if it gets some

pollen from a male flower.


Use a small paintbrush or your finger to collect

pollen from a male flower.  Carefully brush it onto

the centre of the female flower when it is fully

open.


Use this technique on pumpkins and melons too.


 Spring - Summer

bearded irises

calendula

zinnias

many fruit trees

tomatoes

zucchinis, pumpkins,

cucumbers

basil

dill

thyme

bush daisies

apples and pears

European plums

apricots

many annuals,

perennials and

succulents

 Summer - Autumn

oregano

crepe myrtle

shasta daisies

dahlias (single forms)

some grevilleas

lamb's ear

lavender

gone-to-seed herbs: dill,

fennel, parsley, coriander

salvias

croweas

lamium sp. (aluminium

plant)

gone to seed brassicas,

silver beet and lettuce

feverfew

seaside daisy

Japanese windflowers


 

Butterflies love flowers too!


Male zucchini flower

Female zucchini flower