Bee-hold the common, yet hardworking Bumblebee!
Many people don't truly appreciate the lowly bee. One of the major problems that farmers, fruit growers, and some of your average backyard gardeners have noticed over the last few years, is the decline in bee populations, resulting in lower crop yields and less fruit. The causes range from the use of pesticides to encroaching development, to some mysterious, as yet undiscovered ailment.
My commitment to habitat creation and preservation - while still maintaining a socially acceptable appearance - has led me to learn about native and naturalized plantings that are attractive to bees, butterflies, and birds. I'm still working on it, and even though it's all still very much evolving, I'm happy to say that they're coming!
It's not all altruistic, though. I hope that by establishing an environment attractive to all these wonderful natural pollinators, when I get my own vegetable garden going again (this fall, maybe?), I'll be able to grow a lot of what we like to eat without worrying about what the FDA might have missed (the tomato scare!).
Many people are afraid of bees (like MJ, who's allergic to bee stings. Fortunately, we've never tested that theory), but there's really no need. Most of the bees you're likely to encounter will leave you alone - no matter how close you get - as long as you leave them alone. So if a bee checks you out, just stand still and don't swat! Being squished would tick you off, too, wouldn't it?
Okay, I'll get off of my soapbox now!
Did you click on the images? Well, go back and do it now!