I was going to pull up these brassicas to make way for late summer/autumn plantings until I noticed a familiar smell and sound. Bees – over 20 of them working the flowers. Well, my timetable can wait for the bees, I think. They could be my bees which are housed at my sister’s place about 500 metres away or my friend, Lis’, also a similar distance away or they could be those of another local beekeepers – who knows! Bees travel up to 5kms from their hive, so they could be anyone’s. I should have been painting the house but I kept coming out to watch them. Determination, elegance and zest in their foraging. Is it possible that I’m falling in love with bees?
I did notice when I checked on my bees last week, that the foraging bees were returning with an orange/dark yellow pollen. The colour reminded me of calendula or even dandelion but it could be from the brassicas. It’s interesting to think of the garden with bees in mind. Things that are a weed are often a foraging source for bees particularly in urban or semi-urban settings. Well, even in rural settings – Salvation Jane ( Echium plantagineum) it is to beekeepers – forage for the bees, but to farmers it’s Paterson’s Curse – a weed. The honey is quite runny and sweet. Yum!