does anyone plant for the bees anymore.

Discussion in 'Beekeeping' started by james dilley, May 12, 2004.

  1. james dilley

    james dilley Well-Known Member Supporter

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    i just got to thinking and wondering does anyone plant for the bees ,after the main flow till the next one? theres a old beeman down here who used to plant for the bees but in the last 3 yrs he hasn't. if so what are you planting.
     
  2. Terri

    Terri Singletree & Weight Loss & Permaculture Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    I have heard of beekeepers who go for walks after dark, sprinkling clover and dandelion seeds along the shoulders of the roads. Personally, I love the flowering hillside look, so I have started clover at my place. Makes the bees AND myself happy! Enriches to soil, too.

    Next year, I will try to score some sweet clover seed, and MAYBE some hairy vetch. Some vetches do nothing for bees, but I have heard that hairy vetch supplies pollen.
     

  3. Queen Bee

    Queen Bee Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Of course we do! I have planted clover, buckwheat, mountian mint, many other mints and herbs, asters, and I plant about 3 acres of black oil sunflowers every year. I have planted annuals, perrenial, shurbs and trees. But they bees will not take what you want them to IF they have another source that they like better somewhere else...They will fly up to 4 miles to get what they want.
     
  4. Mike in Ohio

    Mike in Ohio Well-Known Member

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    We plant wildflowers. We also have several acres that has a lot of goldenrod. I also have about 20 acres of hay pasture (mix of orchard/grass/brome/clover/alfalfa) that I'm thinking about plowing under and planting with forage for the bees.

    The bees also love the fruit trees we have been planting. As we move forward we are looking at which forage the bees prefer and planting more, paying particular attention to early spring blooms so that we have less need to feed.

    Mike
     
  5. AR Transplant

    AR Transplant Well-Known Member

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    I just wanted to jump in. I don't have any bees (yet) but I do have lots of lavender as well as fruit trees. The lavender comes into bloom first and the bees go wild over it. I would love to know who owns these bees as I think lavender honey would be very nice.

    Just thought I'd throw that in. I also am careful about not spraying anything when the plants are blooming. In fact, I pretty am very careful about spraying anything at any time of the year.

    arkansas transplant
     
  6. CJ

    CJ Well-Known Member Supporter

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    We seeded our pastures with clover last spring. I want to check with the conservation department about seeding with clover and a wildflower mixture. I don't want to ruin the pasture for the goats, but I'd like to find a nice balance for both.

    We try and expand our orchard each year too.
     
  7. beaglady

    beaglady Well-Known Member

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    Yes. I use the bees an an excuse to justify buying more plants & seeds. :haha:

    We have several acre of pasture that is mostly clover & birdsfoot trefoil, maple trees, kitty willows, lavendar, assorted herbs & mints, plus a small orchard & lots of locust trees in the woods. If a seed catalog mentions that a certain plant is 'good for bees', its as good as bought! I use buckwheat as a cover crop too.
     
  8. Billy Bob131

    Billy Bob131 Active Member

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    http://www.apitherapy.com/beeplnts.htm

    Here is a list of 120 good bee plants.

    Oh, and yes we plant for the bees. Simply put if I'm going to spend the time and money to plant someting around the house. I might as well plant something that is good for the bees.

    BB
     
  9. renee7

    renee7 Well-Known Member

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    I knew better than to read this site. I already got tooooo much work to do and Nowwwwwww, I gotta get some bees. Been wanting some for years.

    Anyway, I read some where that bees can't get into the red clovers very well. That the white clovers are better.

    And come to think about it, when I was a little girl, We used to pull the petals out and suck the nectar out of the red clover. How would a bee get to it?

    Is it too late to sow white clover?
     
  10. beaglady

    beaglady Well-Known Member

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    Probably not. I can't speak for whether it might be too late to till and plant, but its always Ok to overseed with clover. Last summer, I had chickens in tractors and would sprinkle clover seed on the area they had just been moved from. Lots of nice lush clover there this year.
     
  11. Planting a specific crop for bees is a loser unless the crop itself has a value---clover for hay, soybeans for grain, etc.

    On the other hand, many beekeeprs cannot resist tossing a little seed here and thera long the roadsides, knowing that in future years the birds will spread the planting all up and down the roads.

    Vetch is an example--It grows well on sunny roadsides and makes what I think is the finest of honeys. For years the interstate shoulders and exit circles near 31st and Memorial in Tulsa were covered in vetch, all started by a few handsfull scattered each year.

    Ox