Helping Our Garden with Mason Bees
I do not know much about bees but I know eventually I would love to have honey bees but the set up costs were just too far fetched for our budget this season so I decided that I wanted to add mason bees. I spoke with the local nursery about adding them and I got some great info!
Mason bees actually are not aggressive bees as they are too busy working. They will not sting you so great to have them buzzing around when you have little ones. The set up was also easy! The package of 6 bees in this little straw looking thing was $16.99 (seems like alot but just think of how wonderful your crops will grow with their help!) The hive was free! She mentioned we could use straws but in googling DIY hives, I noticed all they really needed were a few holes to want to burrow in and do their thing.
So that is what we did with the drill bit. Hubby found a perfect size log and notched it out to sit right on the fencing and angled it towards to sun rise direction per instructions. We drilled all different size holes and made the main hole in the center which was where the bee cocoons were going to be placed.
See the bees? It stated to have the black tip facing out...not sure why maybe it helps direct them? I had to cut off the end some so the tube would go all the way into the hole. The depth of the hole was just a full drill bit size. It was the deepest we could go but it works just fine.
Then I just placed it in there and it just hangs out til the bees start emerging!
Our newest garden space also has its own set of 6 bees and a hive to help get this garden going good!
In the tires on the outer edge I planted wildflower seeds in hopes that will help the bees pollinate til we get our own flowering of crops in the garden beds. The middle tire I might actually add more flowers or sunflowers...not sure yet.
It is just mounted with screws on this 4x4 and it is suppose to face the sun rise direction which we did that as well. So lets hope for not only a wonderfully pollinated garden and crops but also bringing the bees back! Since adding this I have noticed a couple that came out of their cocoons in both garden set ups and now when I hear buzzing around my head I try not to react and swat at it but think oh I sure hope you are one of my mason bees...and wont sting me ha!