- Author: Kathy Keatley Garvey
Honey bees are wild about the wild radish.
It's not an invasive weed to them.
You'll see bees foraging among stands of wild radish along roadsides, pastures and other disturbed areas.
The wild radish (Raphanus raphanistrum) is a member of the mustard family, Brassicaceae--a family that also includes cabbage, mustard and turnip.
Thought to be a native of Asia, the wild radish is found in just about every part of the world. In California, you'll see it throughout the state except in the deserts.
We recently paused to watch honey bees foraging among the wild radish at Pat Heitkam's Honey Bees, Orland. Heitkam maintains stands of wild radish and mustard near his apiary as early-spring sources of pollen and nectar. Bees need the food for their rapid spring build-up.
The bees did not disappoint.
Food for thought, and food for their hives.