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Bee First Aid

Overview of Bee First Aid Station

We are establishing a “first aid station” for bees offering a variety of upright and creeping thymes. The idea for this followed a visit to a herb farm which clearly showed the popularity of this particular herb with different kinds of bees. There is some evidence that foraging from thyme flowers helps to support bees’ resistance to the varroa mite.

The planting is located in our composting area opposite a hose and the water butts. The bees regularly visit this area to drink from the overflow from the taps. The thymes are planted in full sun in a wooden box (no base) in equal parts compost and grit to ensure they do not sit in wet soil.

At present the varieties include Thymus ‘Jekka’ (flowering), ‘Tabor’ (vigorous), ‘Silver Posie’ (variegated) and langinunosus (woolly). The aim is to provide successional flowering to support the bees throughout the foraging season.

Both solitary and honey bees have found the ‘Jekka’ variety ~ while the honey bees are also busy on the established common thyme (Thymus vulgaris) in the Physic Garden.

Obviously we have a large number of “plants for pollinators” in the garden and it is helpful and uplifting to be able to offer such support to these essential insects, both for their communities and our own.

As coincidence would have it, today, 20 May, is World Bee day.

8 thoughts on “Bee First Aid

  1. Thank you for all that you are doing to support the bees, Christine and for sharing that with us. Blessings, Penny.

  2. Yes, Steve, I think we all belong to them! Thank you for your kind and informative comments. Blessings, Penny.

  3. What a happy coincidence, Jane. Thank you for your kind comments. Blessings, Penny.

  4. Thank you for your kind and supportive comments, Peggy. I hope all is well with you. Blessings, Penny.

  5. Thank you for letting me know. I shall buy some for my garden for the Bees. My garden is mostly planted with Bees in mind. They love the scabiosa and the alliums. I shall definitely be visiting the well again when the lockdown is over.

  6. Hi, looking forward to visiting again when we can travel.
    I am a beekeeper and can confirm from my own experience about the thyme. I have never used chemicals to deal with Varroa Mite, using thyme oil and wintergreen in syrup early and late in the season, I’ve never had a problem with the mites.
    I was going to call them ‘my’ bees, but I think I belong to them!

  7. What a delight. We all need to do our bit for these little friends. Coincidentally bought a thyme plant yesterday! Best wishes to you all at the Well

  8. Hooray for Bees and Jekka’s Thyme! Yes, the bees all love it! Here’s to happy bees — and lots and lots of them — buzzing about in all our gardens and at the great Gardens of the Chalice Well! Thank you!

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