Native Bees

There are more than 3,600 species of native bees in North America according to Xerces society or 4000 according to USDA.

Native bees are our most important pollinators.Honey bees are not native to the US, they were brought here from Europe and they are not our number one pollinator, our native bees are. Honey bees are not pollinating my pumpkins behind the studio here. Native bees are.a native bee example is the southeastern blueberry bee, Habropoda laboriosa, a hard working little creature capable of visiting as many as 50,000 blueberry flowers in her short life and pollinating enough of them to produce more than 6,000 ripe blueberries.

Bees will rarely sting you, you can actually “pet” a bee while it is on the flower gatheing its pollen. And bumblebees are such soft little bees. Bees are quite friendly and will not sting you like a darn wasp.Yellow jackets are wasps (carnivores) , and so commonly confused for bees. I for one detest yellow jackets having had an entire wall of house a nest of the varmints. They will sting the dickens out of you. And completely off the subject but relevant, this can be compared to snakes. I was vacuuming in my kitchen and looked down and there was a black snake coiled up looking at me. I almost had a heart attack. However, black snakes are the good snakes as they eat other critters that we don’t want in our house.

In my experience, bees and wasps (other than killer wasps and yellow jackets) could care less about us and will not attack us until you start swatting and fighting them. In an effort to help save the bees, I am trying to plant more native species plants. The next time you see a bee, be thankful because without them, we would not have tomatoes, eggplants and pumpkins.

 Albert Einstein: “If the bee disappears from the surface of the Earth, man would have no more than four years left to live.”