Monday, 21 May 2012


Just a short blog this time as I am flat out with orders at the moment and there do not seem to be enough hours in the day! I found this small female bee (female bees have bent antennae so I was able to identify!)on the floor of the conservatory, very weak and not moving. I made up a sugar solution (50:50 water and sugar) and put a teaspoonful on the floor in front of her - if bees are weak like this it is probably because they are exhausted and need a bit of a battery recharge to get them on their way again - sugar solution is great for this! The bee immediately began sucking the water up through her proboscis, which you can clearly see in the photo. She then rested about ten minutes, drank some more, rested about five minutes and then took to the air and buzzed off out the door, full of energy again!

I felt very pleased with my good deed!

Monday, 7 May 2012


Our lane is a narrow, quiet country lane and is full of wildflowers at this time of year (April/May). The verges have been left to do their own thing and are a shimmer of mainly purple and white, buzzing with bumblebees.

Cow Parsley A very pretty white wildflower also known as Queen Anne's Lace, Fairy Lace and Gipsy's Umbrella. Likes sun or partial shade.

Ground Ivy Creeping wildflower often found at the base of hedges, with masses of small purple flowers.It does have medicinal properties (always check with a qualified herbalist before using!) and was believed to protect against sorcery.

White Deadnettle A great favourite of bumblebees! Leaves are very much like those of stinging nettle (without the stings!) and whorls of white flowers. It grows in drifts down the lane and there's always some buzzing to hear as you walk past!

Hemp Nettle Very common wildflower, again liked by bees. However, to most people it is probably just an annoying weed, but if you look at the small pink flowers closely they are really very intricate and pretty.

Yellow Archangel Another creeping perennial wildflowers, again loved by bees. A bit like a yellow White Deadnettle! Whorls of yellow flowers and vaguely striped leaves. Good ground cover for a shady spot. Food plant of the Yellow Speckled moth.

English Bluebells The beautiful native English Bluebell! There is a little wooded area that the lane cuts through and this is starting to be carpeted in Bluebells. Moth, butterfly and bee nectar plant. Not to be confused with Bluebells in Scotland, a name which often refers to Harebells and not Bluebells.

Lesser Celandine Low-growing wildflower with open-faced yellow flowers. Food plant of the Flame Brocade moth. Some medicinal uses - again, consult a qualified herbalist before using!

Alkanet I love this wildflower! It has beautiful skyblue flowers and grows in clumps dotted down the lane.

Greater Stitchwort Lovely starry white flowers on this sprawling wildflower. Brightens up any hedgerow!

Dog Violet Dainty little mauve wildflower, nestling under hedges. Similar to Sweet Violet but has no scent.

Wild Clematis After a winter as just bare stems and twigs, this wildflower has now sprung into action and is smothered in leaves. It is creeping along the top of the hedgerows and will soon be smothered in small white flowers. Loved by moths, eg, Chalk Carpet, Lime Speck Pug, Haworth’s Pug, Small Emerald, The Fern, Pretty Chalk Carpet, Least Carpet and Small Waved Umber moths, hoverflies and bees.