Looking for a way to celebrate Earth Day? Why not plant bee-friendly plants and flowers in your backyard and flower boxes? Your garden will flourish, and you’ll be helping to combat a growing global concern – diminishing bee colonies.
Bees are responsible for pollinating 30 per cent of the world’s crops and 90 per cent of our wild flowers, bringing everything from broccoli to blueberries to almonds to our tables.
“In addition to fruits and vegetables, bees also love various herbs like basil, oregano and thyme, all perfect for the home chef and even for those with limited green space,” says BC SPCA general manager of communications, Lorie Chortyk.
Flowers that draw bees include honeysuckle, sunflowers and black-eyed Susans. Even the less industrious gardener can help make a difference by leaving dandelions, milkweed and goldenrod for bees to feed.
And here’s an added tip – bees have excellent colour vision. So planting a vivid array of native and heirloom plants and flowers is the perfect way to brighten your outdoor space and attract these busy pollinators.
Along with helping bees, planting native wildflowers and other plants are just one of many ways you can make a bird-friendly backyard. Hummingbirds are also important pollinators too! When they dip their long bills and tongues into flowers to drink nectar, they also pick up pieces of pollen. Hummingbirds are naturally drawn to brightly coloured flowers, especially red ones.