How to Attract Bees & Butterflies To Your Garden

We have had some beautiful weather recently in the UK and with the gardening season well and truly in full swing, now is the time to make the most of the sunshine and turn your garden into a butterfly and bee haven. Let's have a look at how you can attract bees and butterflies to your garden and why you should do it. This is an ad.

The importance of bees and butterflies 

Bees and butterflies are natures pollinators. They help plants grow and breed by spreading pollen between flowering plants. The vast majority of plants we need for food rely on pollination, especially by bees. 

Bees and butterflies also pollinate roughly 80 per cent of the wildflowers in Europe, so by pollinating the flowers they are spreading diversity in the flower world.

Unfortunately, bees are becoming less common. This is due to a number of reasons including loss of habitat and food sources to the effects of climate change and exposure to pesticides. We must act now to ensure bees don't just survive but that they thrive.

How to attract bees and butterflies to your garden

Here are some ways in which you can attract bees and butterflies to your garden. 

1. Plant a variety of colourful flowers

Bees love colourful plants so plant a variety in blue, purple, yellow and all colours of the rainbow. Bluebells, crocuses, forget-me-nots, and comfreys are some such plants.

2. Plant flowering fruit

Apples and strawberries are great flowering fruit that attracts bees and butterflies. They are also amazing to eat fresh from your garden so why not plant some so you benefit as well as the wildlife?

3. Go organic

Avoid chemical pesticides. Use ladybirds and certain herbs as natural deterrents that won't kill the bees and butterflies. 

4. Don't weed the garden

If you can cope with it, don't weed the garden. Plants like dandelions are rich in pollen and nectar and are excellent for bees say experts at the British Ecological Society and each yellow head contains 100 flowers for them to feed on.

5. Avoid planting lawns

Lawns offer very little for pollinating insects and are mown too frequently to benefit them, so if you can, avoid planting large lawns and instead plant colourful flowering plants. 

6. Provide water for pollinators

If you provide water, pollinators, including bees and butterflies will stay longer in your garden, so make a little pond or even a water source just for the bees and butterflies. Apparently, a water source with a smell will attract bees, Wet earth, moss, aquatic plans, worms and more will all make the water easier to find for bees. Try to keep the water fresh to avoid mosquitos. 

7. Leave fallen fruit

Butterflies need food to be available from the early spring through to late summer. In August, some species will feed on the sugar inside discarded fruit, so leave any fruit on the ground to provide food for them.

8. Make a bee house

You can make a bee house easily by drilling holes in deadwood. Check out videos on YouTube if you want some inspiration for a bee house that's more interesting.

9. Read all your can about bees and butterflies

Reading about insect pollinators is interesting and fun. 'The Good Bee - A Celebration Of Bees And How To Save Them', as well as a wide range of discount gardening books are available at The Works.

10. Get a beehive!

If you get a beehive you will have fresh honey as well as encouraging the spread of bees. Every year local beekeeper associations run courses for new people. Visit the British Beekeepers' Association (BBKA) website for more information.

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  1. One thing I love when sitting in my garden is seeing bees and butterflies, one thing we are trying to have is a wild garden to attract more x

  2. Our new garden has Wisteria which the bees absolutely adore. I'm making sure we don't pull up dandelions and we do have a small pond. I am not sure I'm brave enough to consider a bee hive though!

  3. Great post! I love so much butterflies and their colors. They are so beautiful creatures. I like to see them in my garden during spring and summer.

  4. We are doing house renovations at the moment, and I have always been a big plan of seeing butterflies. We will have a bigger garden now due to the house renovations, so I will try and follow some of the tips given in this article. Thanks for sharing!

  5. I think it's so important to promote bees especially to come to your garden to keep the eco system going. I have plans to do a large floral section in the garden to help them when we move x

  6. Kristine Nicole Alessandra11 June 2020 at 13:08

    Rainy season has just started here so I will be missing seeing butterflies. I will keep these tips in mind once the wet season is over.

  7. My children made a bug hotel as part of their homeschooling work, they love checking it to see if any creatures have made it their home.

  8. We really need to do more to encourage these insects into our gardens. A beehives sounds great but I think we'd all be scared to use the garden if we had one.

  9. We've also made bug hotel as a part of our homeschooling. Such a useful post to read. Thanks for sharing.

  10. I love to see bees in flowers and open areas but I have an allergy so as soon as they come close I panic which is a shame as they are beautiful

  11. My kids love butterflies and this year we have spotted a few as we have been growing a lot of wild flowers in our garden

  12. We get so many bees and butterflies in our garden. I think it's because we have a lot of weeds near the bottom which they love

  13. Since we had artificial grass laid a few years ago we don't have any bees at all, which is a shame.

  14. Great tips! We love seeing all the wildlife on our daily walks and in the garden and always try to do our bit to help them out! We recently released butterflies and the kids absolutely loved it and are now obsessed with looking out for butterflies on our walk lol! We have a "wild patch" in our garden for all the bee's butterflies and other bugs to enjoy, we want to get a bug hotel next!