Hopefully a lot of you are able to sit in your gardens at the moment and relax with a glass of wine watching your flowers . Although possibly unable to sit on anything as garden furniture is in very short supply. !! https://www.made.com/ppc/lyra-garden-lounge-set-grey-and-blue . If you are lucky enough to be sitting on your rattan chair you will probably be able to see the bees buzzing around your garden. These fluffy gold and black winged creatures are a favourite with most but how important are they to our environment?
If we all scan back to our Biology GCSE, we remember that Bees are one of our most important pollinators. Indeed as we watch them fly about our gardens we can see them performing exactly that task, as they flit from flower head to flower head. But their global economic reach is far greater than out garden clover. The world as we know it is dependant on bees–at least a third of our food directly relies on bees for pollination. https://www.independent.co.uk/climate-change/news/bees-died-extinct-important-food-b1850196.html. ” Though grain crops are primarily pollinated by the wind the majority of fruits ,nuts and vegetables are pollinated by bees…about 90% of the world’s nutrition.” Our Buzzy friends are said to have a global economic worth of $30bn a year.
But we also know that our buzzy friends are struggling. Tanya St Pierre from Cumbria Wildlife Trust’s Get Cumbria Buzzing project told The Independent: “On World Bee Day, it’s really worrying to know that one-third of our UK wild bee populations are in decline. Much of this is due to the loss of natural habitat, but also to the increased use of pesticides and herbicides. ……… wildflower meadows, which have declined by 97 per cent across the country since the 1930s, and also native forest and woodlands. The UK and Ireland have the lowest level of tree cover in Europe, and just seven per cent of the UK’s forests are in good ecological shape.”
Sally Bavin, Woodland Trust conservation adviser, told The Independent: “ Some bee species rely on old, decaying trees for nesting habitat – a habitat which has declined severely.Dead wood and veteran trees are features lacking in many of our woodlands with a negative impact on woodland ecological condition, including bee nesting habitat.”
So what if anything can we do to help?
First tip is to set aside your glass of wine get up from the rattan chair and try the following:
- Replicate decaying woodland by setting up a Bee Hotel somewhere in the garden https://friendsoftheearth.uk/bees/make-a-bee-house
- Opt for native plants and shrubs in your garden
- Mow less . Maybe even leave an area of the garden unmown
- Don’t use pesticides
- Drop the perfect garden idea..embrace scruffy!!! Wild is far more fascinating.
- Try to change the way you think about weeds let some of them grow…especially dandelions,they are important food for queen bumblebees.
Thanks for reading our blog . It would be great if you can share this post and if you have got any time take a look at our website for some bee related gift ideas.