Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Why So Many Bees?

            An interesting observation at a customer’s house yesterday.

            We were discussing one of the plants in her landscaping, an Autumn Joy Sedum; one of the taller sedums. I was mentioning that I like to hold off on the fall clean up until all plants are done flowering, and these can push finishing this bit of horticultural house cleaning back into November most times.

            She then mentioned how this plant attracted so many bees; and being very near her favorite garden sitting spot asked if the plant could be moved.   

            This got me thinking, “Why was this plant such a bee magnet”? What irresistible pollen factors were present in this plant’s flower that was drawing bees in from all over? Why was this late flowering spectacle such a sought after culinary destination? My mind was buzzing.

            Then it hit me, it’s the last one…

            Tall sedums are the last entomological roadside diner if you are a bee traveling from fall to winter, the last culinary crème de la crème so to speak until the snow flies.

            Just several weeks ago they had a neighborhood full of botanical choices, each one just as succulent and nourishing as the next; but now, it’s every bee for himself (actually they are all female), and the sedum is that last jug of milk on the shelf , that last cab, that last bus, that final buzzer at the end of the game…

            The gist of this is: If your favorite garden sitting spot, that place where you are trying to ring out the most enjoyment of every possible sunny fall day, is parked next to one of these taller sedum varieties; it might not be your best observational plant choice, if bees make you nervous.

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