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Tress with bee houses in

This is how to attract bess to a bee house

Support your local bee population and encourage them into your garden by creating suitable nesting sites. It’s easy, inexpensive, and fun!

As with many species now in decline, there are many factors. The changes in farming and in our landscape have meant a decline in our native plants in good nesting sites for bees.

We may not be able to change the first, but we can certainly help with food and homes. Even if you have a postage stamp garden, most bees do not require much space, and encouraging them into your garden is easy and rewarding.

Planting native species of plants with large pollen-laden flowers will create not only a haven for you but also for bees and other insects such as butterflies. Other plants such as stinging nettles will also be a big hit.

Only a small percentage of bees live in huge colonies like the honey-bee. Most of them live either in small colonies (of around 150 individuals) or solitary lives, making nests in soil, decaying tree stumps, hollow stems, and even the mortar of walls.

Solitary bees tend to be smaller than the honey-bee, but they are still important pollinators. Did you know that every third mouthful of food you eat can be directly linked to the pollination of one of these ‘wild’ bees? So by helping them, we are helping ourselves!

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How to make a beehouse

So we can help the different species of bee ​by making a home which will suit their needs. You can take the easy route and buy a nest, or you could try making your own nest. So if you fancy having a go, here are a couple of easy makes!

What You Will Need to Make a House for Bumble-bees

22.5 cm (9″) ceramic plant pot
7.5cm (3″) piece of hosepipe, which will fit securely in the hole at the bottom of the pot
Hamster bedding (the shredded paper type) or upholsters stuffing
Bank facing the sun for most of the day in a quiet part of the garden

Note: Never use cotton wool, as bees will get their feet caught in the tiny fibers!!!!

Five Simple Steps to Follow

Step One

Dig a hole deep enough and big enough to take the ceramic pot.

Step Two

Push the hose pipe into the hole of the pot for about 2.5cm (1″).

Step Three

Half fill the pot with some of the hamster bedding.

Step Four

Turn the pot upside down and place it into the hole.

Step Five

Cover up with the soil, firming down around the pot firmly.

Or You Could Try Making the Following Home For a Solitary Bee

Items you will need

Container (such a tin, plastic drinks bottle, etc.)
Selection of either hollow plant stems or hollow bamboo cane
Scissors or saw to cut plant stem/cane
Wire or strong string (if using wire, you will need wire cutters)
Tape measure or ruler

Three Simple Steps to Follow

Step One

Measure the length/depth of your container and cut down the stems or bamboo canes to the same length.

Step Two

Push the stems or canes into the container, filling it with as many as you can.

Step Three

Tie the container to a fence post or a tree trunk using the wire or strong string. Try to ensure that the open ends are pointing slightly down; in this way, rain cannot get inside. Also, try to get it facing south as bees like the warmth.

When making these homes try to get them out into the garden and ready for the bees by early spring at the latest. This is the time of year when bees are looking for good nesting sites. Good luck and enjoy your bees!

How to attract bees to a bee house

Bee houses are a great way to attract bees to your garden. Mason bees, Leafcutter bees and Yellow-faced bees are the most common bees in the UK and aren’t normally aggressive, so they are great for your garden.

During the Spring, the bees will lay eggs in your bee hotel ready for them to hatch. Keep checking your bee home for bees and please don’t be put off if they don’t start living in there straight away. It can take time for them to find it.

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You are going to need some bee friendly plants that can help attract the bees. Try and keep the bee hotels in trees or within a wooden box dug down in the dirt.

Having it in a safe place will also help the bees to find it. Flowers growing together are a great way to attract bees too. We tend to put out bee house at the back, dug down and then our flowering plants in front to not only attract the bees but to hide the box as well.

Laura x

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This is how to make a bee house from scratch with what you have at home. Bee homes and bee hotels are a great way to get bees into your garden by Laura at My Beautiful Mess

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