Bee Wary

marilynbvt65July 23, 2007

I was wondering if anyone had a list of foliage or flowers that bees do not prefer. That are not pollinated by bees, etc.

I have a beautiful garden around my pool area that I have been working on for years which attracts hummingbirds, butterflies and all sorts of little harmless critters along with lots & lots of bees. Within the last two years, after being stung once or twice, I know now that I have developed an allergy and I am petrified to experience the pain and suffering again. My garden this time of year is full of bees and I need to have my husband dig up all my hard work. I was wondering if there is anything that I can replace them with that is not so bee friendly. I hate to go back to only grass. Thanks for any help you can give. Marilyn

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Marilyn, Sorry to hear that after so much hard work. Do you know what kind of bee stung you? Do you mean allergic as in needing to carry an epipen or go straight to the emergency room? If so I'd look for some plants that aren't pollinated by bees and maybe a variety of grasses or plants that are wind pollinated? One flower that I don't ever recall seeing bees on is daisy. We have 6 hives honey bee hives in the yard so we plant to attract them, and most flowers we have also have a variety of other bees and wasps visiting them. It seems like any plant that produces nectar will attract bees, but I'm not sure where you would find a listing of plants that don't attract bees. good luck and look at it as a new landscaping challenge!

    Bookmark   July 23, 2007 at 5:42PM
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Yes - the flowers are so pretty. I have lots of honeysuckle, mallow and other wonderful flowers for bees to flourish. I don't mind the large bumble bees but the small yellow jackets, ground bees and wasps are the ones that get me nervous. I haven't needed to go to the emergency room yet but swell up for weeks which is torture with pain and itch. I think they know I am scared because I just look at them and they come circling me. I agree about the new landscape challenge maybe just some variegated leaves such as Hostas will have to do for the new garden.

Thanks for the reply.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2007 at 9:41PM
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marilyn, I was just on another beekeeping forum where someone mentioned that they've never seen their honey bees in any of their roses. Someone replied that many of the new hybrid roses don't really provide and nectar or pollen so the bees aren't really interested, so you might look into that. One other question. Do you wear perfume or even a strong scented body lotion or deodorant? We literally have 240,000 honey bees in our backyard hives. I can mow almost up to the hive entrances and they pay no attention to me. My son wears some kind of deodorant or aftershave that they don't like. One day I kneeling next to a hive trying to get close-up pictures of bees on the landing board. They payed no mind. When my son got to my house he walked up to see what I was doing and was standing 10 feet away and a bee went over and stung him. Another time he had one bumping him in the head although it didn't sting. When we work the hives and he's not wearing anything smelly there isn't a problem.Light colors are also better than dark and clothing with smooth texture is better than something with a wooly feel like fleece. Lastly,slow movement helps. If a bee flies near you, staying calm and not flailing your arms is the best thing to do. I know it's easier said than done. When I was afraid of bees I would panic if one came near me. Now if one lands on me I wait till it leaves or gently brush it off. I still swell up quite a bit when I get stung and itch for days, but that's a normal reaction. If you break out in hives all over,or have trouble breathing and a loss of blood pressure, that's an allergic reaction and you should seek immediate attention and Always have an epipen with you.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2007 at 11:07PM
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