Because they pollinate flowers and crops, bees are essential to the health of our environment because they enable plants to develop fruits and seeds. Planting flowers that offer food and habitat to these significant pollinators will help, which is just one way we can contribute to the decline in bee populations in recent years. Here are some of the greatest flowers to plant for bees if you’re a gardener in Ontario.
Bee balm (Monarda spp.): As its name suggests, bee balm is an excellent plant to have in your yard to draw bees. From mid-summer to the beginning of fall, the vibrant flowers blossom in hues of red, pink, and purple. Bee balm is a fantastic choice for herb gardens as well because it has a spicy, minty flavour and leaves that may be used to create tea.
Goldenrod (Solidago spp.): Goldenrod is a common native wildflower that is frequently blamed for causing allergies, but in reality, bees, not the wind, pollinate it. Bees and other pollinators rely heavily on the tall, golden flowers, which bloom in late summer and fall. Goldenrod is a fantastic addition to native or meadow gardens.
Coneflowers (Echinacea spp.): Coneflowers are well-liked garden plants with a variety of colours, such as pink, purple, and white. They are a fantastic source of nectar for bees and butterflies, blooming from mid-summer through the end of the season. Coneflowers can grow in a variety of soil types and environments and are extremely simple to grow.
Black-eyed Susan (Rudbeckia spp.) is a well-liked option for garden borders and meadows. It is another native wildflower. From mid-summer through fall, the bright yellow blooms with black centres bloom, providing bees and other pollinators with a good source of nectar. In addition, black-eyed Susan can tolerate dry, sunny environments.
Eutrochium spp., sometimes known as Joe-Pye weed, is a tall native wildflower that blooms in the late summer and early fall and produces clusters of pink or purple flowers. It attracts birds and serves as a significant source of nectar for bees, butterflies, and other pollinators. Joe-Pye weed favours moist ground and some shade.
Known for its fragrant blooms and foliage, lavender (Lavandula spp.) is a common garden plant. The purple-blue flowers, which bloom from the middle of summer to the beginning of September, also draw bees. In addition to being used in cooking and crafts, lavender likes well-drained soil and direct sunlight.
Sunflowers (Helianthus spp.): Sunflowers are a traditional garden plant that are simple to grow and are available in a variety of shapes, sizes, and hues, from tiny, yellow dwarf types to enormous, multicoloured varieties. The enormous, brilliant flowers, which are a favourite of birds and bloom from mid-summer to fall, draw bees.
Wild bergamot, often known as bee balm, is a native wildflower that blooms from June to early October. Its scientific name is Monarda fistulosa. It belongs to the mint family and has clusters of pink, lavender, or purple flowers that hummingbirds, bees, and butterflies find to be quite alluring. Although it can tolerate some shade, wild bergamot prefers direct sunlight.
In order to provide food and a habitat for bees in your garden, it is essential to establish a variety of flowers that bloom all during the growing season. You can boost the bee population and promote a healthier ecology by including some of these plants in your yard. Happy planting!