Plants for bees

Categories: All about bees, Bee hive keeping |



Honey plants is a large group of angiosperm plants from which the bees collect nectar and pollen, food supply of beekeeping. Producing nectar nectaries are in the form of flat points, bumps, grooves, often located deep in flowers, and sometimes they are hidden in special thickening of sepals or petals. Nectaries are less frequently on stems, petioles, stipules and bracts. Quantity of nectar varies greatly in different species, for example, tropical orchids of the genus Coryanthes has up to 30 g, a common lime – 0,15-7,46 mg, macrophylla – 0,5-11,54 mg, raspberries (on average) – 14 mg, clover – 0.16 mg. Honey bees and other insects of the family of  the bee recycle collected nectar and pollen in honey and ambrosia. The same plants often serve as a source nectar and pollen. Some plants (poplar, birch, cherry, etc.), in addition, secrete resinous substance, from which the bees make glue – propolis.

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   Honey plants are classified mainly by flowering time, the nature of a harvest and habitats. By flowering time they are most often divided into four groups: early spring, spring, summer, autumn. By the nature of a harvest distinction: plants from which the bees collect only pollen, for the collection of pollen and nectar, nectariferous – giving only nectar. By habitat they are divided into: forest, fruit and parkland, meadows and pastures, farm honey plants, honey plants sown specifically for bees.

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 Choosing a location for an apiary it is not always possible to find such places, which have around abundance and continuous flowering of honey plants. Therefore it is necessary to organize activities to improve the food supply to fill periods without harvest or make collection stronger and more sustainable.

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   Usually bees collect pollen from entomophilous plants that produce and the nectar. But in some periods of the season (especially in the early spring) when the honey plants are not yet in bloom or very few of them are in bloom, bees take this food from wind-pollinated plants. The most valuable for the bees are: hazel, alder, elm, oak, birch, walnut, aspen, castor bean, lupine, maize, mullein, hemp, quinoa.

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A good source of nectar and pollen is hay (dry meadows and flood). Their value is measured not only by the size of areas, but also by the composition of plants. Most valuable are meadows, which have a lot of clover (pink, white), yellow alfalfa, deervetches and other legumes.

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Forest honey plants for beekeeping are crucial. In addition to tree and bush honey plants, a good source of honey are herbaceous plants for bees of burnt areas, deforestation, vacant lots and glades.

   The main groups of honey plants, growing in forests and parks are: wood, shrub and suffrutescent – tilia cordata and macrophylla, maple, willow, white and yellow acacia, honey locust, honeysuckle , snowberry, chestnuts, olive, heather, raspberries, grassy – cyprus, angelica, cow parsnip, goldenrod, goutweed, Pulmonaria.

Approximate quantity of nectar of honey plants for bees

Name of plant
The sugar content in nectar of 1 hectare of a plant (with continuous growth), kg
Cyanosis blue
18
Bruise
325
Skerda marsh
87
Plum
26
Black currant in the floodplain
12
Goutweed common
160
Winter cress
42
Meadowsweet
38
Blackthorn
22
Thyme
45
Caraway
23
Milfoil
24
Pumpkin
36
Phacelia
290
Phacelia in mixtures
79
Cotton
150
Chicory
100
Bird cherry
20
Cherry
38
Blueberries
82
Heal-all
29
Wood-mat
79
Chin meadow
15
Halimodendron
194
Wartwort
8
Sage Meadow
110
Sage whorled
300
Pink Sage
190
Blue Sage
170
 Èl’sgol’ts Patras
183
Sainfoin
172
Apple
23
White dead-nettle
280
Purple dead-nettle
56
Deadnettle spotted
124
Hairy hawkweed
13
Spotted orchid
13
Buckwheat is a rich source of nectar for bees, which gives about 60 kg of honey per hectare. Buckwheat honey has a dark color and distinctive taste.
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White clover and pink give a long and rich harvest, and these plants are gladly visited by bees.

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Sainfoin gives abundant early harvest,  it blooms about a month. Honey from the nectar of sainfoin has high quality.

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In some places the bees like to visit alfalfa and hairy vetch .

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Sunflower in many southern areas is the main source of nectar. One hectare of sunflower in good weather gives 30-50 kg of honey.

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Cotton creates a stable food supply in southern regions.

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Mustard, rapeseed, winter cress also increase the food supply for bees.

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Melons and vegetables give small, but steady collection of nectar and pollen.

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Locust - one of the great southern honey plants – gives ample harvest, often constituting the main honey flow.

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Linden provides the highest quality honey and in many places is a major honey plant, providing ample harvest. However, lime is very sensitive to unfavorable weather conditions, especially drought, so it is unstable.

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Fruit trees (plum, pear, cherry, apple) give nectar in the early spring. It promotes good development of bee colonies. Hectare orchard gives about 35-37 kg of honey.

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Maples - (field, tatar, platanoides, silver) are lovely honey plants that provide up to 500 kg of honey per hectare of plantation in good conditions.

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White mulberry gives much pollen, and sometimes juice of overripe berries.

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Rowan is visited weakly, but in some years it is a good help to bees in the honey harvest.

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All shrubs , except for hips, are good nectariferous. Some of them give early spring harvest (golden currant and black willow, etc.), and a number of shrubs give nectar in the early and mid-summer (yellow acacia, honeysuckle). In early spring wild rose and hazelnut give pollen, as these plants do not have nectar.

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Fireweed is a basic bee plant of many central and northern areas. It grows in forests, especially in clearings, abundant in burned areas. In a good weather flowers produce a lot of nectar.

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Heather - late honey plant, common in the forests. Heather honey has is not suitable for feeding bees during the winter.

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Phacelia is good honey plant, provides up to 150 kg of honey per hectare. It is often sown specifically for bees. Phacelia begins to bloom in 40-60 days after sowing. It can be sown at different times so the bloom can occur in a period when other plants do not bloom, and bees do not collect nectar. Phacelia is used for silage in mixture with other crops (corn) and for plowing for green manure. Blooms during a month, eagerly visited by bees. It is recommended to make wide-row crops, so Phacelia gives more nectar.

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Borage gives about 200 kg of honey per hectare. It is planted specifically for bees. For one hectare you need from 6 to 8 kg of seed. It begins to bloom in a month after planting and blooms for 30 days.

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Bees take a lot of nectar from angelica goutweed, oregano, lespedeza, lungwort and other honey plants – from forests and fields.Vacant lots, ravines and other uncultivated areas have good honey plants – camel thorns, dead nettle, sage, bruise, field sow thistle, blue cornflower, gills, etc.

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Plants for bees

  1. υγρά αναπλήρωσης says:

    I’ím impressed, I have to admit. Rarely do I encounter a blog thatís both educative and engaging, and without a doubt, you’ve hit the nail on the head. The issue is something that too few people are speaking intelligently about. I am very happy I stumbled across this during my hunt for something concerning this.

  2. Gladys says:

    I’m so happy for this site, is really helpful in the search for plant for bees and will be of great help to my project

  3. Anna says:

    Very nice and I am grateful for this informative site. It only leaves me with one question…
    Is all pollen and nectar good for bees?

  4. ASHRAF LATIF says:

    I love honey and I do keep bees at my farm.Now I am worried because there isnt enough food for them.

  5. Khalil Rahimi Dvin says:

    Thank you, your site is very instructive and informative.

  6. aberageleta says:

    it is good as world but it is not good as localy

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