Pollinator Haven at Wave Hill

Wave Hill in the Bronx is a 28 acre garden, an oasis that transports visitors to another world. The vista from the Pergola Overlook commands the attention of the Palisades, sheer cliffs that rise from the western shore of the Hudson River. The gardens form a pollinator haven amid an urban landscape. There is mounting evidence that planting flower patches in urban gardens and green … Continue reading Pollinator Haven at Wave Hill

Osmia: Powerhouse Pollinators

The blue orchard bee (Osmia lignaria) is a fast efficient native pollinator of early spring flowers. In the apple orchard 250 to 300 of these powerhouse pollinators can do the equivalent work of 90,000 (two hives) honey bees.  Part of this success is due to their ability to visit more flowers per minute and to transfer pollen more effectively.  It is also helpful that some … Continue reading Osmia: Powerhouse Pollinators

The Industrious Carpenter Bee

The fortunate female carpenter bee reuses the maternal nesting chamber and often shares the same hole with her sisters to create tunnels within tunnels. Others set out on their own seeking soft dry wood to begin their life’s work. One late May day, while sitting on my porch, I observed as one such bee set to work marking out a spot. Using her power mandibles … Continue reading The Industrious Carpenter Bee

Old Brambles for a New Home

The Curious Life of the Small Carpenter Bee Winter is the perfect time to start thinking about how we can help our native bees. One easy project is to create nesting habitat that will benefit the small carpenter bee (Ceratina spp.). Using pruning shears prune back old bramble bushes such as raspberry, blackberry or wine berries. In the spring, small female carpenter bees will use … Continue reading Old Brambles for a New Home