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Name: Jenn Capestany
Trenton, TX (Zone 8a)
Region: Texas
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Jenn
Dec 26, 2011 4:30 PM CST
This past season I planted a few perennial salvia into a front garden bed. I couldn't believe how many mason bees came to visit the flower spikes! My neighborhood was built onto former cattle grazing land: very flat, lot of invasive grasses, lot of native species gone from the area. I was very pleased to see these natives come around and stay right up until the cold temperatures came.

Does anyone have any other suggestions of plants that attract native bees?
Name: Sheryl
Hot, hot, hot, Feenix, AZ (Zone 9b)
Charter ATP Member Region: Southwest Gardening Keeps Horses Dog Lover Cat Lover Permaculture
Butterflies Birds Cottage Gardener Herbs I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Irises
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sheryl
Dec 26, 2011 6:30 PM CST
Hi Jenn - are you looking for annuals, perennials or both?
In the end, only kindness matters.

Science is not the answer, it is the question.


Name: Stephanie Gonzales
Texas (Zone 8a)
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Permaculture Dog Lover Hummingbirder Cat Lover
Region: Texas Seed Starter Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Butterflies Plant and/or Seed Trader
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StephGTx
Dec 26, 2011 7:29 PM CST
Our native passionflower, Passiflora Incarnata attracts them as well. Passionflower (Passiflora incarnata) It will double duty for you for the bees as well as the Gulf Fritillary butterflies. Vitex tree, Vitex (Vitex agnus-castus 'Shoal Creek') will also attract them. The big giant bumbles love this. Shoal Creek is the one I have and it blooms from spring till fall.
Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.
Name: Jenn Capestany
Trenton, TX (Zone 8a)
Region: Texas
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Jenn
Dec 28, 2011 10:47 PM CST
Either or, Sheryl. I'd just love to hear everyone's successes. If I can incorporate any into my property, great, If not, then at least I have the knowledge! Smiling
Name: Jenn Capestany
Trenton, TX (Zone 8a)
Region: Texas
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Jenn
Dec 28, 2011 10:52 PM CST
Thanks for the suggestions, Steph! Passionflower is gone from my area, and was already on my list to attempt to reintroduce. Good to know that the bees will assist!
Name: Sheryl
Hot, hot, hot, Feenix, AZ (Zone 9b)
Charter ATP Member Region: Southwest Gardening Keeps Horses Dog Lover Cat Lover Permaculture
Butterflies Birds Cottage Gardener Herbs I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Irises
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sheryl
Dec 29, 2011 12:40 PM CST
I recommend the Nepetas - Walker's Low has been a good one for me, assuming you have some space or a machete to prune it with (I'm kidding, but it is an iron-clad tough plant).

I was told once upon a time that bees seem to prefer yellows - which is why 90% of the desert flowers seem to be yellow. So, assuming that is true, Chocolate flower (which really does smell like chocolate in the mornings, BTW) - Berlandiera lyrata[i], Butterfly weed "Hello Yellow" [i]Asclepias tuberosa (and doubles for flutter-bys), [i]Gaillardia aristata/[i] 'Amber Wheels'. These are all also really tough, drought tolerant plants.

Seems to me that bees really like Lavenders, too.
In the end, only kindness matters.

Science is not the answer, it is the question.


Name: Stephanie Gonzales
Texas (Zone 8a)
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Permaculture Dog Lover Hummingbirder Cat Lover
Region: Texas Seed Starter Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Butterflies Plant and/or Seed Trader
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StephGTx
Dec 29, 2011 7:31 PM CST
Jenn I can help you out on the passionflower. Get a hold of me in the early spring and I can give you a few. I would also be happy to share some Walkers Low with you if you'd like it as well. Where is Trenton in relation to DFW?

Good one Sheryl. I don't know why I didn't think about nepeta also. They do love my walkers low.

[[[ I was told once upon a time that bees seem to prefer yellows - which is why 90% of the desert flowers seem to be yellow.]]] Hmmm, there's a thought, wonder if that's why bees have yellow coloring Blinking Camo Blinking
Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.
Name: Sheryl
Hot, hot, hot, Feenix, AZ (Zone 9b)
Charter ATP Member Region: Southwest Gardening Keeps Horses Dog Lover Cat Lover Permaculture
Butterflies Birds Cottage Gardener Herbs I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Irises
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sheryl
Dec 29, 2011 8:22 PM CST
Good thought.... I wonder?

I'm definitely doing some Lavender this year - they're another one that likes it hot, dry and low in nutrients.
In the end, only kindness matters.

Science is not the answer, it is the question.


Name: Karen
Cincinnati, Oh (Zone 6a)
Forum moderator I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Cut Flowers Winter Sowing Charter ATP Member Seed Starter
Echinacea Plant and/or Seed Trader Region: Ohio Region: United States of America Butterflies Hummingbirder
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kqcrna
Dec 30, 2011 1:01 PM CST
I think bees are drawn to certain plants without regard to color. My A. tuberosa is orange but it's covered with bees whenever in bloom
Thumb of 2011-12-30/kqcrna/c4b244
Same for sedum AJ and it's pink
Thumb of 2011-12-30/kqcrna/64f348

Same holds true for red salvia, any digitalis...

Karen
Name: Jenn Capestany
Trenton, TX (Zone 8a)
Region: Texas
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Jenn
Dec 30, 2011 5:36 PM CST
I've heard the same thing about yellow, though all of our experiences point to it not being an exclusive requirement. The salvia that the bees loved in my garden was white or purple. They also went for the Russian sage in a pinch.

Steph, thanks so much for the offer! I'll make a note to contact you in the spring. Trenton is about an hour north of Dallas, in Texoma close to Oklahoma. I'll take the passionflower, nepeta (catmint?), whatever you're givin! Hilarious!
Name: Stephanie Gonzales
Texas (Zone 8a)
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Permaculture Dog Lover Hummingbirder Cat Lover
Region: Texas Seed Starter Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Butterflies Plant and/or Seed Trader
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StephGTx
Dec 30, 2011 9:37 PM CST
You are welcome to both of them. Don't forget to remind me in a few months though.
Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.
Name: Jenn Capestany
Trenton, TX (Zone 8a)
Region: Texas
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Jenn
Dec 31, 2011 9:43 PM CST
Okay! Yay!
Name: virginiarose
Virginia
Money talks but Chocolate Sings!
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Ideas: Level 1 Avid Green Pages Reviewer Hibiscus Dragonflies Daylilies
Bee Lover Dahlias Butterflies Hostas Birds Lilies
virginiarose
Feb 11, 2012 4:17 PM CST
I had bees on this blueberry bush the whole time it had flowers, they just love them and they do not let you interrupt them. Green Grin!
Thumb of 2012-02-11/virginiarose/77bd87
Susan

In the spring, at the end of the day, you should smell like dirt.....Margaret Atwood
Name: Sandy Coffman
Jacksonville, Florida
Charter ATP Member Forum moderator I helped plan and beta test the plant database. I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Region: Florida Dog Lover
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wren
May 4, 2012 7:26 PM CST
A great plant for the native bees and in fact all pollinators is African Basil. Last summer I had one plant that get huge in a pot and it was covered all day with a lot of bees and wasp. This year I have gotten about 8 plants
Thumb of 2012-05-05/wren/3cc37a
Name: tabby
denver, colorado zone 5
Charter ATP Member Clematis I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Daylilies Irises Plant and/or Seed Trader
Cat Lover Enjoys or suffers cold winters Region: Colorado Ponds Roses Sempervivums
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tabby
Jun 12, 2012 4:48 PM CST
Wow, what a bee photo!

This year I'm paying attention to what the bees like. They don't seem to go after my clematis much, even though it is full of brand new flowers. The daylilies are only attracting a few.

The centaurea is absolutely full of bees of all sorts:
Thumb of 2012-06-12/tabby/4ce2dc Thumb of 2012-06-12/tabby/1cf205 Thumb of 2012-06-12/tabby/b9d2e0

The penstemons are a big hit with the bees, both honey bee and native bee. I saw many many sweat bees in the penstemon, as well as bumble bees and some small carpenter bees.

Thumb of 2012-06-12/tabby/986d33

The poppies are just full of bees.
Thumb of 2012-06-12/tabby/f8ba91

Sedum flowers atrract lots of the smaller bees right now. Later the tall sedums will attract all sorts of bees.

Thumb of 2012-06-12/tabby/2f8a34 Thumb of 2012-06-12/tabby/57146c
Name: Karen
Cincinnati, Oh (Zone 6a)
Forum moderator I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Cut Flowers Winter Sowing Charter ATP Member Seed Starter
Echinacea Plant and/or Seed Trader Region: Ohio Region: United States of America Butterflies Hummingbirder
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kqcrna
Jun 12, 2012 6:21 PM CST
I grow some plants to attract bees. Some of my best are butterfly weed, sedum, liatris, digitalis, salvia.

Karen
Name: Sandy Coffman
Jacksonville, Florida
Charter ATP Member Forum moderator I helped plan and beta test the plant database. I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Region: Florida Dog Lover
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wren
Jun 12, 2012 8:23 PM CST
Native bees go after the pollen, I grow sunflowers for them

Male Carpenter Bee
Thumb of 2012-06-13/wren/818df2
Thumb of 2012-06-13/wren/17ef54
Name: tabby
denver, colorado zone 5
Charter ATP Member Clematis I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Daylilies Irises Plant and/or Seed Trader
Cat Lover Enjoys or suffers cold winters Region: Colorado Ponds Roses Sempervivums
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tabby
Jun 13, 2012 12:07 PM CST
Wow, those bees eyes are awsome!
Name: Sandy Coffman
Jacksonville, Florida
Charter ATP Member Forum moderator I helped plan and beta test the plant database. I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Region: Florida Dog Lover
Birds Butterflies Amaryllis Seed Starter Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Hummingbirder
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wren
Jun 13, 2012 6:42 PM CST
this boy was very sluggish, very early in the morning and he let me get him on my hand.
When I was down at the Gardens on Gainesville, Florida I met a student who was doing his doctor thesis on native bees. He gave me his email address and I sent this one and some more of my pictures of native bees and he said he was going to use them in his talks

I find that the sunflowers and the African Basil are the best for attracting the native bees.
Thumb of 2012-06-14/wren/0b46de
Name: tabby
denver, colorado zone 5
Charter ATP Member Clematis I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Daylilies Irises Plant and/or Seed Trader
Cat Lover Enjoys or suffers cold winters Region: Colorado Ponds Roses Sempervivums
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tabby
Jun 13, 2012 8:36 PM CST
Sunflowers are fantastic, but mine are about a month or more away from blooming.

The lavender is just starting to bloom and I know it'll be full of bees. I almost feel guilty harvesting it.

I can safely say that leaf cutter bees love my roses' leaves. :-)

This is the first year that I'm making a real effort to see what the bees prefer since a local bee nut wants native bee pictures for his website, plus I now have honeybee hives in the back yard. I'm amazed at how many teeny tiny bees there are here.

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