Our most successful Beestra so far this year.
So you did all your homework. You read up on the best places to put nurseries, you picked a spot by some nice flowers, maybe you even cleared some earth nearby for a steady mud supply. A few long weeks later and what do you have to show for it? Three tubes filled, maybe? That's a little... underwhelming.
But should you be disappointed? I don't think so! In fact, I think that ANY tubes filled is cause for celebration. Every tube, generally, holds 7-10 bee larvae. That's 7-10 native bees that otherwise would be in precarious living conditions. Some scientists argue that bees can pollinate 5,000 flowers a day- so three tubes means that once they hatch, there are up to 150,000 flowers pollinated in ONE DAY. All thanks to your nursery!
As I've said before, bees are very much at risk right now. It certainly wouldn't surprise me if many people struggle to get their entire nursery filled up because as we know, there just aren't as many bees around these days. On our tree farm, which is 250 acres of mostly-wild forests and fields, we have yet to find a single nursery with more than a handful of tubes filled up. And I still get excited every time I see a new one! There are so many factors affecting bee populations, and living in an agricultural area, I suspect that pesticides are commonplace. We take our victories where we can get them- so remember, every mud-cap you see is a victory for native bees.
If you're still unsure about your progress, keep an eye out for a new blog post about location and how the smallest changes can make a big difference!
Ames Chiles is a native bee enthusiast from the Ozarks and co-founder of BeeFoster. She studied biology at Missouri State University and followed her passion for learning about our natural world to the west coast. Upon moving back to the area she began to invest her time in land stewardship and sustainable business, eventually starting a company. BeeFoster is a solution to an immediate and pressing issue of a declining bee population. This mission is what steers her path forward and gets her into the garden everyday.