Thursday, 22 May 2014

Honey bees on Poached Eggplant, Crimson Clover, Embothrium, Ceanothus....

May 21st
 Limnanthes douglasii, commonly known here as Poached Egg Plant is in flower, It is a real favourite of the bees.
Poached Egg Plant is native to California and Oregon but It has happily self-sowed and overwintered every year since I first planted it in our Irish garden in 1998, where it enjoys our damp clay soil.

May 9th
  Big pollen sac on this honeybee.

 I was delighted to see the honey bees on the Crimson Clover.  The bumble bees love it too.

Phacelia is in flower in the vegetable garden and the honey bees love it.

 The other main temptation for bees in the vegetable garden is the purple sprouting broccoli which is in flower. 
(Kales are finished now).

A snapshot across the vegetable garden. In the foreground, Borage and Forget-me-nots, Crimson Clover in the middle, Poached Egg-Plant beyond.

 I usually see wasps and bumble bees pollinating the Raspberries but the honeybees like them too.

The Ceanothus continues to be a hive of activity.

The Chilean Flame tree (Embothrium) is 20 feet tall and 12 feet wide. It is covered in flowers and the buzzing of honey bees and bumble bees. Most of the activity takes place out of my reach but a couple of honeybees came down briefly to grace the camera.

Embothrium flowers.

The bees are also enjoying the Borage flowers. The honey bees have finally finished feasting on the Rosemary, it is almost finished flowering. While the flowers of the forget-me-nots continue to linger, they are abandoned by the bees in favour of the Poached Egg Plant, Phacelia and Clover.

No honey bees in this picture, these are the berries, or grapes, of the Mahonia, also known as Oregon Grape. The bees enjoyed the Mahonia flowers all winter and now the birds will enjoy the berries, the bush is dripping with bunches. They are edible (although they have pips and taste a bit sour), they can be made into jelly or wine, but I am busy planting now and still have lots of preserves left from last summer.

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