We all know how vital bees are to the success of our ecosystem. For many plants to grow and produce food, they need to be pollinated by our bees – from apples and squashes to almonds and vanilla. Without them, they will not grow properly and our crops will suffer. Did you know that around one third of the food that we consume each day relies on pollination mainly by bees?
Our ecosystem is dependent on bees – and yet we are still hearing of worryingly low numbers of bees throughout the world, and including Australia. So what can you do to help our busy friends thrive in Australia and protect our entire ecosystem?
1. Plant wildflowers
The number one thing you can do to help bees is to provide them with food, and for bees this means flowers. Wildflowers are a particularly good choice for bees because they are very nectar-rich – the food of bees! Our two seed mixes, Bee-friendly and Honey and Butterfly, contain the perfect combination of wildflowers that bees love and which provide them with all the nutrients they need. They also bloom for 7-8+ months of the year – this is vital for the bees as many need food all year-round.
The great thing about wildflowers is that they can be planted almost anywhere in any sized space – whether on balconies, street corners, pots, borders, orchards or whole fields. The varying heights of wildflowers also provides the perfect habitat for bees, as well as other small insects and animals.
2. Build a bee bath
A fun and effective way to support bees is by building them a bath where they can take a drink whilst having a well-deserved rest. Simply fill a shallow container with clean water (a bird bath would work, or even a small dish or bowl), and place some small stones inside which come out of the water. Bees can then land on these stones to take a drink.
3. Provide them with habitat
One of the largest threats to bees is loss of habitat, primarily caused by urbanisation. There are many ways you can provide bees with somewhere to live. Many people simply drill holes of different sizes into dead trees that are still standing. You could even build your own bee block like this one here. Alternatively, there are many places you can buy them from.
4. Start your own honeybee hive – or adopt one
If you’d like to take it a step further, you can start your own honeybee hive. As well as protecting our bees and helping our ecosystem, you also get the added benefit of producing your very own honey and beeswax! If you don’t have the time or space for this, not to worry – you can adopt one right here in Australia. With your donation, Adopt a Beehive creates honey bees sanctuaries and provides training to new and young beekeepers to help increase populations and improve crop production. In return, you will also receive 8kgs of pure, 100% raw honey from your hive within 12 months.
Plant your own wildflowers today and help to build a sustainable environment for our bees to thrive in.