On our morning walk we pass Barbara’s well-maintained flower garden. Today, Barbara called out, “Pat, did you see those white bees?” I had never heard of white bees so we looked carefully. They were certainly white, but I couldn’t get a good fix on them as they were darting in and out of the flowers so fast. After I replayed the videos I could see what they were…wasps and bumblebees covered with white pollen.
Archive for July, 2013
Posted in Bee to Flower relationship, Bee-loving flowers, Bumblebees, Music video, Videos, Wasps, tagged Bombus vosnesenskii, Pollen covered wasp, Poor Man's Orchid, Schizanthus, Wasp pollinator, Yellow-faced Bumble Bee on July 31, 2013| 2 Comments »
Despite the fact that the Oregon Coast gets about 60 inches (1500 mm) of rain a year, we still are very frugal about watering. Overhead sprinklers not only waste water but can invite plant diseases. We’ve found drip watering works well…but how do you water squash which is spaced so far apart? Over the years, we’ve developed a method that gets the job done with a little effort at the beginning of the season. It’s as easy as playing with tinker toys.
Posted in Bee to Flower relationship, Bee-loving flowers, Birds Foot Trefoil pollination video, Music video, Natural Beekeeping, Videos, tagged bee pollinating yellow vetch, bee sipping nectar, bee-loving flowers, beekeeping, honey bees, macro nature video, music video, Wild pollinators, yellow vetch on July 16, 2013| 8 Comments »
Who ever said plant biology was boring? Certainly not me after shooting this video.
Since this is my 100th blog, I wanted to do something special. I wanted to have some music in the background. Sweet Thunder, a quartet in Portland, graciously gave me permission to use one of their tunes called, “Blues in the Barn.” Kiera O’Hara, who composed the music, said “she wrote it when she lived on a tree farm in Michigan and her piano room was a refurbished nook in an old barn.” “We are a collaborative bunch, so the sound of my tunes on the disk is very much the result of that collaboration.”
Thank you Sweet Thunder for the sweet music.
The video shows the bee and flower cooperation. I never took biology in school, so I don’t know if they show this racy stuff, but this is an unrated Bee movie in the truest sense.
I was unsure what this blossom was. I thought it might be a yellow vetch, so I asked Morris Ostrofsky. Morris, a forty year beekeeper and scientist affiliated with the Oregon State Master Beekeeping Program positively identified this blossom as a Bird’s Foot Trefoil.
“The plant is indeed Birds Foot Trefoil. This plant ranks high on the bees’ favorite forage list. If you go back in some of the older bee publications, it was actually encouraged as bee forage. However, it’s no longer encouraged because it has been found to be invasive. However, the bees’ still love it.”
We’ve got plums!!! Yes, we’ve had plums before, but not like this. Our honey bees and Mason bees have contributed to the success…but now I’ve got to protect them. I’ve also seen evidence of raccoons. I won’t show the photo of raccoon scat, just trust me on this. Raccoons can climb fences (in my case, deer cages that surround the trees.) Last year we had counted about 40 to 50 plums almost ready to harvest, which disappeared overnight from raccoons climbing the wire deer proof cage.
Posted in Bee-loving flowers, Crab spider, Natural Beekeeping, Videos, tagged bee-loving flowers, beekeeping, Blackberries, Clover pollination, common privet, Cosmos, English Thyme, Erysimum, Escalonia, honey bees, macro nature video, macro photography, meadowfoam, natural beekeeping, nature photography, photography, pollinators, wallflower, Wild pollinators on July 8, 2013| 3 Comments »
Posted in Bee-loving flowers, Natural Beekeeping, Videos, tagged Bee on bee behaviour, Bee-havior, bee-loving flowers, Creeping St. John's Wort, Hidcote Hypericum, honey bees, Hypericum, Hypericum Calycinum, macro nature video, macro photography, natural beekeeping, pollinators, St. John's Wort on July 5, 2013| 4 Comments »
This Hidcote hypericum, commonly called St. John’s Wort or Aaron’s Beard was given to us by my mother-in-law about 20 years ago. We never knew how much bees like it until recently, when we started keeping bees…but like it they do. I often stop to watch them in a frenzy hurriedly climbing over and through the anthers. Hidcote hypericum grows in a bush unlike the Hypericum Calycinum, Creeping St. John’s Wort, that grows along the ground.
I shot this short video to capture the action…
Another example of Bee-Havior and “Blossom Rights”
Posted in Bee-loving flowers, Videos, tagged bombus melanopygus, cheater bees, comfrey, Hypericum, Macro video of nature, Scabiosa pollinator, St. John's Wort, wallflower, Wild pollinators, Yucca tree pollination by honeybees on July 4, 2013| Leave a Comment »
Footnote: 12-26-13 Jeff Ollerton, a Professor of Biodiversity in the Department of Environmental and Geographical Sciences at the University of Northampton. says what I’m calling “Yucca Trees” are more likely “New Zealand Cabbage Trees,” (Cordyline australis )
A short video to show all the action…