- Author: Kathy Keatley Garvey
Talk about singing the blues.Specifically, the noted "Blue King" (Aster amellus), a member of the sunflower family, Asteraceae.
This is one flower that deserves its own chorus.
At the Harry H. Laidlaw Jr. Honey Bee Research Facility, University of California, Davis, there's a "Blue King" planted close to the back entrance leading to the apiary. It serves a triple purpose: food for the bees; a splash of color for the beekeepers who tend the apiary; and eye candy for photographers and other visitors.
In the late fall and early winter (before the frost), the bees are all over it.
However, soon the "Blue King" will have company. Come spring, the one-half acre Häagen-Dazs Honey Bee Haven and the quarter-acre Campus Buzzway (two bee friendly gardens planted last fall near the facility) will be buzzing with bees.
Circle your calendar: the public opening is June 19.