Saturday, August 18 is National Honey Bee Day! Many people are concerned about the health of honey bees, and rightly so, as there has been a decline in their populations during the last decade.
This year on National Honey Bee Day, learn how you can protect honey bees by choosing plants for your landscape that bees prefer visiting to collect pollen and by avoiding the use of pesticides that can be toxic to bees.
For specific details about what else you can do, read the article What Can Gardeners do to Help Honey Bees.
If you see large black or golden-brown bees flying in your garden or landscape, don't be alarmed! These insects are most likely carpenter bees, and although their large size and loud buzzing can be intimidating, they are mostly harmless. Males can't sting and females rarely do, and both are considered beneficial because they are pollinators.
However, sometimes carpenter bees bore into lumber or trees to make nests and may damage structural wood or leave unsightly holes and stains. Multiple bees may use a common entry hole, tunneling several feet into wood to create chambers for their offspring.
The best way to manage carpenter bees boring into wood is through prevention. Use hardwoods in structures where possible...
- Author: Karey Windbiel-Rojas
In observance of National Pollinator Week, we thought we'd share how you can manage pests around your home, garden, and landscape and still protect pollinators.
Natural enemies (predators, parasites, and pathogens) reduce pest populations and help prevent damage to plants. Pollinators such as domesticated honey bees, wild bees, and other pollinating insects, are essential in the production of many of the fruits, vegetables, and nuts we grow in California, both in our backyards and in commercial agriculture.
Natural enemies and pollinators can be harmed by pesticides...
Have you seen large black or golden-brown bees foraging in your garden? These could be carpenter bees. Carpenter bees bore into lumber or trees to make nests for their brood and can damage structural wood or leave unsightly holes and stains. Multiple bees may use a common entry hole, tunneling several feet into wood to create chambers for their offspring, and the sound or sight of these large bees may be disturbing to some people. However, carpenter bees are considered mostly beneficial because of their role in pollination. Males can't sting and females rarely do.
Prevention is the best approach for management. Use hardwoods in structures where possible and paint or varnish exposed surfaces. If you find carpenter bee holes and...
- Author: Eric C Mussen
[From the June 2013 issue of the UC IPM Retail Nursery & Garden Center News]
Most people have heard about the decline in honey bees (Figures 1 and 2) during the last several years. Are there things home gardeners can do to help?
Better Nutrition, Fewer Pesticides
The actual cause of the decline is still uncertain. What is known is a number of factors are probably involved. Honey bees are their most robust and able to best contend with stresses when well fed. In addition to water, honey bees require nectar sources for.../span>