Wednesday 23 January 2019

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Cork Independent

Home & Property

Plant flowers and the bees will follow

Wednesday, 2nd January, 2019 4:48pm

For 2019, we are asking all gardeners, tidy town groups, businesses and schools to consider bee friendly plants when gardening.

As far as important species go, they are top of the list. Bees produce sweet honey but more importantly they pollinate most of our plants, resulting in fruit, vegetable, nuts and seeds.

A world without the buzz of bees would definitely sting. If we respect nature, learn to grow with it, nature, bees and our children will thrive.

At Griffins in Dripsey, we believe the solution to a bee friendly world is simple.

If every home, school garden, business and community think about bees when planning their next outdoor project, we will protect our bee population.

Support the replanting of hedgerows and the reintroduction of wild plants and shrubs to our country ditches. These natural borders were the home for so many habitats and flora. The decline of the fragrant and beautiful honeysuckle and wild roses is a massive loss to all.

For 2019, when designing a garden or bed, I will always encourage planting bee friendly plants like traditional cottage garden plants, herbs and if possible, create a wild garden area for wild flowers and provide a nesting site by leaving a pile of leaves, twigs and grass in a sunny corner.

We are asking each Tidy Town, community group, town chamber to elect a sub team who are interested and excited about nature and wildlife. Plant small patches of wildflowers here and there in margins, gardens, waste ground, roadside verges and motorway embankments.

A small change in each project could make a big difference. Griffins have adapted the Poulvane roundabout in Ballincollig and have committed to bee friendly plants and gardening techniques. This roundabout created a great buzz last summer. The bees arrived in large numbers to the roundabout and it was truly buzzing! This year with the help of Cork County Council and Ballincollig Tidy Towns, we will be creating pollinator corridors in Ballincollig town.

My love of nature came from my parents and I wish parents would encourage their children to love and respect nature. Designing the home and garden to be fun and friendly for children and bees.

The best gardens provide a range of nectar and pollen rich flowers which bloom from spring through to late spring.

Bulbs like bluebells, muscari, snowdrops and crocus and nearly all herbs are bee friendly especially rosemary, lavender and thyme.

Wallflowers, geraniums, foxgloves, heather and catmint are popular with bees as are trees like apple, horse-chestnut, willow and hawthorn.

If you have any questions about bee friendly gardening or need any advice email Margaret@griffinsgarencentre.ie or contact Griffins of Dripsey on 021-7334286.

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