We Need the Bees!

Two years ago a friend gave me a bee balm plant.  Last year had quite a few blooms.  This year it has taken off.  At this point it is 64 inches tall and is full of blooms!

Bee balm is known to attract butterflies, hummingbirds and bees.  It is also considered edible and medicinal.

While I have been delighted by the number of blooms on my plant, I have also felt distressed by how few bees there are both in the bee balm and in my garden as a whole.  I’m also concerned that essentially all the bees are bumblebees. There are almost no honey bees despite the fact that I have neighbors three houses down who have honey bee hives.  It has never been this bad before.

As you probably know the bees are disappearing all over the world.  They are getting sick and dying.

From BeesFree: A list of possible causes for bee Colony Collapse Disorder includes beekeeper management practices, new pesticides, pesticide use patterns, nutritional deficits associated with extensive monocultures, climate change, exotic parasites and pathogens, diminished immunity to pathogens or even interactions among two or more of these factors.

From Green Peace: Scientists know that bees are dying from a variety of factors – pesticides, drought, habitat destruction, nutrition deficit, air pollution, global heating, and so forth. The causes of collapse merge and synergise, but we know that humanity is the perpetrator, and that the two most prominent causes appear to be pesticides and habitat loss.

Last year, Whole Foods created a visual of what its produce department would look like if there were no pollinators.  They removed 237 items from their shelves; 52% of the total.  This year they did the same thing with their dairy counter.  See the graphic pictures.

My rhododendron bushes were full of bumblebees when they blossomed this year.  The buzzing was so loud that it sounded like a bee hive was nearby.  Now there are usually only one or two bumblebees in the garden at a time; and they seem to have no interest in the bee balm.  At least they visit these three plants:

May we find the solution to the problem and have the will to do whatever it takes to reverse this impending disaster.

 

Written for Traces of the Soul Prompt #9:  A Flower is to Me

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20 thoughts on “We Need the Bees!

  1. Planting a diverse amount of flowers that bees use to collect nectar will help. One of the problems according to a video on bees is the lack of diversity in their diet as so many of their native plants have been killed. And bee farmers supply their bees for select crops instead of rotating their diet with a variety of crops. The biggest threat is the mite and the fungus. Hopefully a cure can be found in time. I still can envision a new workforce…”Pollinators”. Humans hired to do what bees did..pollinate.

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  2. I didn’t know that bees were going extinct really sad 😦 . Trust China to work on something.Maybe you should try something out too. Do let us know if it works. PS: your blooms are really lovely!

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    1. Great article! I have planted an entire yard full of plants that attract bees as well, & to date we really haven’t seen the expected amount of bees. While we are discussing the cause, let us not forget that GMO’s are a huge contributing factor to the demise of the honey bee! When a plant can’t be polinated, what role does a bee play? Remember that seeds that are genetically altered, do not produce more seeds, they produce seeds that will not grow again. It’s a trickle down effect…the food produced from genetically altered seeds aren’t good for us, & they aren’t good for the bees! What will happen if this isn’t rectified? Whold Foods is an eye opener, & if bees can’t polinate they will die of starvation, & we will have little food to eat! Eventually, not just the bees die off, we will all die off…….

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      1. Thanks for sharing so much information. I’ve watched the garden even more since I wrote the post. I’ve seen one honey bee and a few bumblebees. That is a tremendous difference even since last year.

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    2. I have hand pollinated zucchini and other squash for several years because of the decreasing number of bees. It works well for home garden.

      I have been keeping an eye on the bee balm ever since I wrote the post. I have never seen a bee there. It is strange and sad……..

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  3. hello karuna its dennis the vizsla dog hay this is why mama and dada ar always so happy to see owr lavender plants infested with honeybees evry yeer!!! and also why they dont go ennyware neer the lavender plants this time of yeer eether if they can avoid it!!! ok bye

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