Well what a wash out the summer has been so far, but we hope like us you have been making the most of it and having lots of fun?!
There have been reports of Butterflies and bees having a hard time because of the bad weather, so it’s even more important to provide a food source for these lovely creatures.
On sunny days our meadow is all a flutter with meadow browns, skippers, gate keepers, coppers, blues & fritillaries, it’s an absolute delight to sit amongst the long grass and watch them.
We had a lovely visit from Julia’s house hospice in July, 18 young people came on a sibling day, toured the nature reserve and emptied out bug traps – identifying their finds under magnifying glasses. They also did a wildlife survey in the meadow and planted Bee friendly seeds to take home, finished off with plenty of cakes of course!
Julia’s House visit, on nature trail
We experimented this year with planting patches of phacelia all around the farm with incredible results, on sunny days the hum of happy bees and hover flies can be heard from a far!
We all need to give Bees and butterflies a helping hand, so planting even a few nectar and pollen rich plants can help, plants like; Fox glove, field scabious, borage, rosemary, comfrey, red clover and honeysuckle to name but a few. The British Bee Keepers association have more information on planting for Bees and how to get involved; http://www.bbka.org.uk/
Have you seen all the ragwort around this year? – A nightmare for horse owners and farmers! But great for nature lovers, We have loads in our garden, again really good for hover flies.
One area that has not done so well this year is the vegetable garden, we carefully brought on beans, courgettes, pumpkins and squashes in the poly tunnel, only for them to be devoured by slugs once planted out, very disappointing! But at least the tomatoes, courgettes and chillies still in the poly tunnel are still going strong.
Graham is continuing to create amazing hand painted signs with illustrations of the creatures that live in each area of the nature reserve, so that our bee shack visitors can learn more about the importance of different habitats and how to create them.
Graham’s fabulous Bug Hotel sign
Things are gearing up for our Pippin Apple Party, a special day on Sat 6th Oct to celebrate autumn and all things appley, we’ll host this lovely free event in our meadow, with apple pressing, folk music and dancing, appley children’s activities, delicious food and drink and much more. We are really excited to be able to share our apple press with the local community and get everyone together for a fun family day, any moneys taken on the day will be ploughed back into our Bee green fund – the next projects will be planting more trees, creating willow tunnels and putting up more bats boxes and owl platforms.
Apple tree in the orchard, with dung heap veg bed
Rightyho, Bye for now Bee Greeners
Thanks for reading