• Bees,  Gardening

    Why Are Pollinator Gardens Important?

    Pollinator gardens are not only beautiful, they actually play a crucial role in our ecosystem. So, why are pollinator gardens important? Should you start a pollinator garden at home? Read on to find out. Disclosure: As an affiliate I earn from qualifying purchases. This is at no cost to you and helps to keep this website running. What is a Pollinator Garden? A pollinator garden is a type of garden that is planted specifically to attract pollinating insects.  This is done by planting nectar and pollen producing plants, as well as plants that provide shelter for pollinators.   Pesticides should be prohibited in pollinator gardens, as it will kill pollinating insects. …

  • Bees,  Solitary Bees

    Where to Buy Mason Bees and How to Care for Them

    While mason bees look similar to honey bees, they behave very differently.  The biggest difference between the two is that mason bees are solitary. While honey bees live in a hive with thousands of other bees, mason bees live alone.   Because of the mason bees docile nature, many people have had interest in having a mason bee house in their garden.  Buying a mason bee house is easy, but once you get that set up you need to find out where to buy mason bees.  Mason bees are a great, low maintenance bee to raise. If you are looking for where to buy mason bees, the easiest way to buy…

  • close up photo of bumblebee on flower
    Beekeeping,  Bees

    When to Stop Feeding Bees in Spring

    For the most part, bees can feed themselves, but there are times when a beekeeper may want to step in and offer some assistance.  Feeding bees sugar water can be very helpful to new colonies or during a nectar dearth.   While feeding bees sugar water can save a starving colony, it is also important to know when to stop feeding bees in spring. Giving bees too much sugar water when they don’t need it isn’t good for them too.  What do Bees Eat? There are three things bees eat – pollen, nectar, and honey.  Worker bees spend much of their time foraging pollen and nectar to bring back to the…

  • Bees

    What do Bees Need to Survive?

    Like humans, bees need certain things in order to survive.  Because bees have lived on their own for millions of years, you may not have given it much thought. But without these 3 main things, a bee colony will be doomed.  So, what do bees need to survive? Food Like all living creatures, bees need food to survive.  Food is so important to them that they spend much of their time collecting and storing food. What exactly do bees eat?  The following are food sources for bees: Pollen Nectar Honey Pollen and nectar are foraged from nearby flowers. That’s why it is very important for a bee colony to be…

  • Beekeeping,  Bees,  DIY,  Kids

    Do Bees Need Water?

    Everyone knows that bees gather pollen, nectar, and propolis, but people often forget about another very important resource bees must collect – water. As a beekeeper, you must provide an adequate water source for your bees. Even if you are not a beekeeper, it’s nice to leave a watering station out for the bees as well. Do Bees Need Water? Yes, just as bees need food, bees need water as well. Bees need water to survive, and if there isn’t a reliable water source near their hive, they will go out in search of water. Bees use water for drinking and for multiple uses within the hive. How Bees Collect…

  • Bees,  DIY

    Propolis Benefits for Hair

    For those who struggle with hair loss and thinning hair, the answer may be in an unlikely place.  Propolis has long been used for skincare, cosmetics, and medical purposes.  But a recent study has shown that there are also propolis benefits for hair, especially thinning hair.  What is Propolis Propolis is a resin like substance made by bees from tree resins and sap.  It is usually dark brown and has a sticky texture, which is why it’s often called bee glue.  Bees use propolis all over their hive to fill cracks and gaps in the walls.   Propolis is also used to line nest cavities and even reduce the hive opening. …

  • worker-bees
    Bees

    Types of Honey Bees and Their Roles in the Colony

    Honeybees are eusocial insects. That means that they live in groups and divide labor among members.  Bees are reliant on each other for survival. Eusocial insects show an advanced level of social organization.  Some eusocial characteristics include cooperative brood care, overlapping generations within a colony, and specialized behavioral groups (castes).  Other eusocial insects are ants and termites.   While it is commonly thought that honeybees have 3 castes, technically speaking, there are 2 sexes and 2 castes.  So when someone says that there are 3 castes, they really mean that there are 3 types (males and 2 female castes).  The 2 sexes of honeybees are male and female, of course. The…

  • Bees

    Why do Bees Swarm?

    In beekeeping, swarming occurs when a single colony splits into two colonies.  This normally happens during the spring, but occasionally bees will swarm during other seasons.  When the colony starts to get too large, the existing queen and half of the bees will leave to find another home.  This phenomenon allows the colony to reproduce.  It’s something the colony does to survive and thrive.  Both the original colony and the swarm colony will have their own queens, so in the end, more bees will be made.  The Swarming Process Preparation Once the hive starts getting crowded, the colony will make the decision to swarm. They will prepare for this by…

  • Beekeeping,  Bees

    How to Identify Robber Bees

    Once your bee colony is established and producing honey you will have to be on the lookout for robbers. You see, bees from one colony will actually try to steal honey from another colony. In beekeeping this is called robbing, and the bees are called robber bees.  A successful beekeeper must know how to identify robber bees, as well as prevent them.  What are Robber Bees Robber bees are technically forager bees. It is their job to collect food within their flight range.  Their flight range is usually 2 miles from their hive. The food they collect is normally pollen and nectar, but robber bees are after honey.   Robber bees…

  • Bees,  DIY

    How to Use Raw Propolis

    Have you ever seen that sticky, brown paste all over the inside of a beehive?  That is called propolis, and it’s more important than you think. While propolis has many uses for bees, it is also beneficial to humans. Just like beeswax and honey, propolis has long been harvested and used medicinally.   If you’d like to learn how to use raw propolis, read on. But first let’s cover the basics.   What Is Propolis? Commonly called bee glue, propolis is a resin like substance used by bees to seal small open spaces in the hive.  While the color or propolis can vary depending on it’s source, most propolis is dark brown.…