September... the end of summer, the start of fall. Bittersweet times. But made much sweeter because September is National Honey Month! We all have heard about the worrying demise of the honeybee, so this is the perfect time to tell you what you can do to help our bees. Here are some things you can do:
1. Plant bee-friendly flowers and plants in your yard or in containers. Bees aren't fussy, they'll get their pollen from the lushest yard or the smallest balcony. The Honeybee Conservancy suggests planting single flower tops such as "daisies and marigolds, rather than double flower tops such as double impatiens. Double headed flowers look showy but produce much less nectar and make it much more difficult for bees to access pollen."
2. Plant 3-season flowers. The Honeybee Conservancy advises: "Plant at least three different types of flowers in your bee garden to ensure blooms through as many seasons as possible. This will provide bees and other pollinators with a constant source of food. For example:
Crocus, hyacinth, borage, calendula, and wild lilac provide enticing spring blooms. Bees feast on bee balm, cosmos, echinacea, snapdragons foxglove, and hosta in the summer. For fall, zinnias, sedum, asters, witch hazel and goldenrod are late bloomers that will tempt foragers."
3. Limit or eliminate entirely the use of pesticides, which can be dangerous to bees.
4. Buy local honey, and support local beekeepers. Support locally grown organic fruits and vegetables farmers.