Let your lawn bee!

The honey bee pollinates roughly a third of all the fruits and crops in Northamptonshire. If we don’t look after it, we could struggle to produce apples, berries, nuts, cucumbers and cabbages in the future. We also need the honey bee to help save our wild flowers, which have declined by about 80% in the last decade!

Here are our four top tips for making your garden bee-friendly:

1. Honey bees love to fly between wild flowers to collect their nectar – so we’d like to encourage you to avoid mowing your lawn too frequently and let it grow a bit this summer!

Doing this will let the wild white clover (see above photo) take hold for a while, offering a pollen source for many species of bees. All bees love it and it’s great for their food stores. Because they’re talking of water shortages it shouldn’t be too painful either either as lawns won’t require so much cutting this year.

This photo was taken by Bristol Water Company during the 1960s.. Let’s hope it doesnt get like this!

Make sure to tell your neighbours to cut down on their lawn mowing as well…

2) Try to seed a small portion of your garden with wild flowers, planting lavender is a great idea and you can pick up seeds up at most garden stores.

3) Encourage your local council to plant up wild flowers around their offices, cemeteries, road islands, major grass verges and village greens. This could save them regular cutting expenditure and help nature in the process!

4) Watch TV and listen to the radio! There is tons of factual stuff about our nation’s pollinators on the box right now, from Sarah Raven’s impressive Bees, Butterflies & Blooms which you can catch on BBC I-Player to the more child friendly Channel 5 series Animal Families presented by Michaela Strachan.

Tell us your top tips for keeping your garden bee-friendly in the comment box below

– James