I’m sure we have all heard the horror stories of our dwindling bee population and the fact that without our buzzy little friends our survival doesn’t look too pleasant.
So, what can we do to help our bees? Well, according to the Big Bumblebee Discovery survey (which was carried out by 30,000 schoolchildren) English lavender is twice as inviting to bees as French lavender.
The more simple English lavender buds are not only more appealing to the bees, but they are more accessible than the frilly French lavender.
The French lavender variates are of course beautiful, however, due to the fact that they are far more delicate than the sturdy English lavender plants, they don’t tend to favour our chilly winters.
The survey discovered that bees were spotted every 3-5 minutes on English lavender, where they were having a little nibble on the nectar. French lavender is known for its ‘Rabbit Ear’ petals which characteristically point upwards only had a visit from a bee every 5-7 minutes, this may be due to the difficulties that they face when trying to source nectar from the frilly French lavender buds.
Another surprise from the survey was that bees are flocking to more urban areas, in fact it was recorded that there were more bees found on lavender in cities and urban areas than the more traditional rural locations.
If you’re looking to add some lavender to your garden to entice some bees, choosing the right variety is paramount. Bees tend to prefer the English varieties, with Hidcote, Grosso and Edelweiss being a few of their favourites. Once you have chosen your lavender plants, popped them in the ground you can sit back, relax and enjoy the influx of beautiful butterflies and buzzy bees who will be eternally grateful for the ‘pit-stop’ you have provided them with.