How to Attract Bees to your Garden

Warning – A beautiful green lawn is a desert as far as bees, butterflies and many other insects are concerned. 

Warning – The first thing people often do when they decide to attract bees to their garden is plant marigolds which unfortunately are low in pollen. They are double flowers which make it difficult for the bees to get pollen. Marigolds also produce a strong odour that bees tend to avoid.

Hive Haven Betty Bee Beneficial Pollinator Mix Seeds – tried & tested in our garden!

Each packet contains more than 1000 seeds including Nasturtium, Red-Radish, Borage, Calendula, Cosmos-Mixed, Basil-Mixed, Lucerne, Daikon Radish, Fennel, Sunflower and Buckwheat. Find Our Product Here!

At Hive Haven we are urban beekeepers who love our vegetable & herb garden. We established hives in our backyard in 2011 and soon realised that our European honeybees & Australian stingless native bees were attracted to certain flowers and not others. We wanted a pollinator mix that would cater for both. The Hive Haven Betty Bee Beneficial Pollinator Mix provides over 6mths of continuous flowering plus you can nibble on the greens.

Your garden is a refuge for bees, butterflys and birds. Its the only home they have!

Plants rely on bees and other insects to reproduce and so they have adapted over time to become more attractive to them. It’s a mutual relationship where the bee is provided with nectar and pollen. The bee needs nectar for carbohydrate and pollen for protein. The plants need bees to disperse pollen to other plants of the same species. A win win for both!

Bees play an essential role as pollinators in the garden. Without bees many of our vegetables and fruit would never get to the harvest stage. In the Hive Haven garden we encourage everything  to flower. Have you ever tasted broccoli flowers, radish flowers or watched a bee foraging on a delicate fennel or basil flower?  Leave some for the bees!

Bee Friendly Tips & Suggestions

(Adapted from Native Plant Sunshine Coast Association

  • Use local native plants endemic to your region. Many native plants are bee attracting and are adapted to your local conditions.
  • Use a range of colours: bees have good colour vision – include blue, purple, violet, white and yellow
  • Use different flower shapes and plant in layers: open flowers ensure easy access for pollinators, while brushes and tubes are important to bees as well. Provide plants of different heights from ground covers to shrubs and trees.
  • Plant in clusters – massed flowers of one species is more effective than individual plants.
  • Plant for different flowering seasons: bees like food throughout the year but require extra food in spring.
  • Plant where bees like to visit: select sunny spots rather than shady spots with protection from strong winds.
  • Provide water: bees have short legs, so place wet sand or pebbles in a shallow water tray.
  • Provide a home: bees like to forage close to home within 100m of the hive with approx. 500m their maximum range.
  • Don’t use pesticides: the good guys die along with bad guys.

Bee Friendly Native Plants suited to South East Queensland

  • Coastal Pigface Carpobrotus glaucescens
  • Guinea Flowers Hibbertia spp.
  • Fan Flower Scaevola albida pink
  • Wallum GrasstreeXanthorrhoea fulva
  • Daisy Paper Xerochrysum bracteatum
  • Lemon Myrtle Backhousia citridora
  • Summer Beauty Sormbia ‘Summer Beauty’
  • Native Sarsaparilla Hardenbergia violacea
  • Bower Vine Pandorea jasminoides
  • Hairpin Banksia Banksia spinulosa
  • Bottlebrushes, Paperbarks Melaleuca/Callistemon spp.
  • Grevilleas Grevillea spp.
  • Blue Tongue, Native Lasiandra Melastoma malabathricum
  • Rice Flower, Sago Flower Ozothamnus diosmifolius
  • Wild May Leptospermum polygalifolium
  • Pink Phebalium Pheballum notti