Saturday, 24 January 2009

Bee Food Plant Buys

I simply can't be trusted near a plant nursery. But I didn't actually go near one - honest!!! Just went to the local Farmer's Market this morning and there were all these people selling plants and well, you know the rest . . . .

Having said that, I'm rather pleased with what I bought, most of it being able to provide food for the bees:

12 English Lavender
3 Rosemary bushes (upright)
1 Thyme
1 Lemon Thyme
1 Lemon Scented Verbena
2 Hibiscus
2 Penstemon
1 Liriope
1 Daisy bush

And all of this for the princely sum of $58. Most impressed.

Now speaking of the bees, I opened the hive last week to have a look at how they are going. They've pretty much filled the bottom box with brood and honey and I'm hoping they'll move up into the top box soon.

Not sure if we'll get any honey this season, as we need to leave enough for them to overwinter. But I'm just happy that they seem to be doing well.

love and light


molly said...

Lordy do I know the story? I'm going to have a rainforest here LOL!

Great selection!

naturewitch said...

Hi Molly
Well a rainforest would be better than a desert!
The more plants we put in, the more likely it is that we can build a microclimate to do what we need.
THat sounds like a good rationalisation, doesn't it? ;) xx

molly said...

That it does NW!

Cheryl said...

Hi Naturewitch....wonderful selection of plants....of course many of those will be good for you lavender and the thymes. Poppi and I split some thyme plants on Wednesday. We started with 3 ended up with 12. They are overwintering in the greenhouse.....

So pleased to hear that your bees are doing well. You may be interested to know that I have not been able to find any English honey on the supermarket shelves. I am going to pop to the farm shop next week to see if they still have their honey supplier. The situation is quite worrying here. This year I will be planting lots more bee plants to try and support the wild bees.....

Em said...

Hello NW, I love reading your bee updates :) And I do like your plant buying rationale ;)

River said...

I love lemon verbena. Except for my current home, which has NO space, I've planted one in every yard I've ever lived in. Often picking small sprigs and putting them in the bathroom for fragrance.

naturewitch said...

Hi Cheryl

Although I already have some lavender and thyme, I couldn't resist getting more, especially at bargain prices. Apparently, the lavender and the rosemary are good companions to fruit trees, so I may even get a few more.

So sad that you can't get English honey in the supermarket - a sure sign that things are not as they should be. Hope you have luck in sourcing some from the farm shop.

Remember your post a while ago about Mahonia and bees? It's stuck in my mind ever since and this morning I came across a reference to it in my local gardening book. The type they mentioned is also medicinal and is known as Oregon Grape. Given that it is bee food late winter and medicinal and grows here, I'm going to be looking for it when I have the area ready to plant it. Thanks for the info on it. xx

naturewitch said...

Hi Em

Glad you enjoy hearing about the bees. Truth be told, I'm a little besotted with them and I often go outside just to watch them going in and out of the hive or hovering amongst the flowers.

As for the plants - the more the merrier! xx

naturewitch said...

Hi River

I also love Lemon Verbena - it reminds me of lemon sherbet. Unfortunately, I've killed a couple by planting them in too frost sensitive a place in the garden, so this one's going in near the house. (Didn't realise until recently that they don't like frost much).

Could you put one in a large pot, do you think? That way you can enjoy it's gorgeous fragrance. xx

Curious Curandera said...

I have the same problem. I love plants! I am known to stop along the road while driving and dig one up or if I'm driving past someones house and see something I like I atop and ask for a cutting. lol I can't help myself.

Libby said...

What a lovely selection of plants, I am so looking forward to buying new plants specifically for bees

River said...

I get my lemon verbena fix these days when I visit my daughter's house. I used to live there and planted the tree myself,(if it's taller than me, it's a tree, even if it's really a bush/shrub). Everytime I visit I bring home a small branch for the bathroom. All my space and large tubs are filled with fruit trees. Yum.

naturewitch said...

Hey Curious
Thanks for dropping by. I admire your bravery; I'd never be game enough to knock on the door and ask for a cutting. But I have been known to stop the car or stop mid-stride in order to pick some medicinal plant. xx

Hi Libby
Yes, buying the plants for the bees sounds so altruistic, but really it's just fun! xx

Hi River
Glad you have a ready supply of that beautiful herb. xx