Mason bee systems - different styles, good and bad
I have been trying out several houses for two years, and Im finding that thereÂs are many different systems. Some work well and some don't. I consider my bees a fun garden project, and keeping them appeals to the "fun science experiment" side of me. So before I choose houses and set them out for the spring, I seek your advice.
Mason bee system designs
1. Drilled wood blocks Â bare wood only
2. Drilled wood blocks with liners or tube inserts
3. Cardboard tubes in an open container (plastic pipe, can, cardboard cylinder, etc.)
4. Stacking trays Â plastic (or corn-based material)
5. Stacking trays Â bare wood only
6. Removable whole plastic blocks
7. Natural reeds in some sort of holder
Tubes and liners
1. Manufactured paper tubes (thin paper)
2. Heavy card board tubes (difficult to bend in half)
3. Hand- rolled paper
4. Natural reeds
Which of these systems did you find very successful, and which ones caused significant problems?
"Success" can be interpreted a number of waysÂtotal population growth, mortality, problems with parasites, the resulting M:F ratio, etc.
(There is another thread on this on the board, but itÂs now several years old so IÂm starting a new one.)
What have you learned?
(Mason bee house, mason bee condo, mason bee nest, mason bee hive, orchard bees, whatever you call them; I think they're fun) :-)