At Ironweed Apparel, we sure do love our pollinators. And not just honeybees, but the 3500+ species of native bees that call North America home. We wanted to show our love of these busy, buzzy helpers by creating a new gardening shirt to express two of our favorite hobbies - hugging trees and loving bees!
We added our Hug a Tree/Love a Bee raglan-style gardening tee to the Ironweed Apparel collection just before the end of 2016 in hopes that there would be lots of other gardeners who want to celebrate their love of bees with us.
Our new pollinator shirt
Tips to support native bees
In celebration of our new tree and bee t-shirt, we'd like to offer these tips for supporting bees in your yard and garden:
- Stop using synthetic chemical pesticides. These products don't just kill plant-eating insects in your garden, they also kill the good bugs too, including bees, butterflies, ladybugs, and other beneficial insects. Here are some great tips for managing garden pests without resorting to harmful pesticides.
- Learn to id native bees. Sometimes bees can seem a bit intimidating, but most species are docile and incapable of stinging. Learning to identify bees is a big step toward understanding the role they play in the garden. Here's the low-down on how to identify some common native bee species.
- Plant lots of flowers. This one is easy! Instead of planting only evergreen shrubs around your house, include lots of flowering annuals, perennials, shrubs, and trees in your landscape. Here's a list of some great plants to support pollinators.
- Understand their nesting habits. Most native bees are solitary nesters - meaning the females nest in a little tunnel in the ground or in a hollow stem all by themselves. Only a handful of bee species form social nesting colonies. To encourage them to nest in your landscape, use these tips to create nesting habitat for solitary native bees.
- Tell others how much you love bees. There's nothing wrong with using a little peer pressure to educate friends and neighbors about how helpful bees are. They're responsible for one in four mouthfuls of food and drink we humans consume, and we need to spread the word about how important bee preservation is.
Wear our Hug a Tree/Love a Bee shirt and start a conversation about the importance of these amazing little creatures!