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Talkback: Bees and bee flies

And there was I thinking my ivy arbour over my old pear tree was just for the blackbirds. Thank you, Richard, for great blog on bees. I can't wait for this wind to die down to get out and do some voyeuring among the ivy.


  • Really interesting! Several people on our allotments have bees, and recently someone approached my Dad and I to ask if we would keep a hive for them on our half plot. She said the bees would fly straight up in the air so there was little risk of stinging. My Dad (87) isn't so sure, however. Any advice?
  • There is a "Bee Week-end" at Easter at the Bristol University botanic Garden where I am sure all concerns about keeping bees will be answered. many people keep bees in cities now and I watched a beekeeper collect a swarm from the Garden last year. It seemed a very straightforward process and just think of the free honey, Mandy.
  • Thanks v much, Happymarion. Mmm, free honey does sound great! I love these dedicated days and weekends, though I probably won't make it as far as Bristol. We had a 'Potato Day' up here in Yorkshire last month.
  • I have a hive in my field where a local bee keeper keeps his bees. I don't have to do anything except thank him for some honey each autumn and enjoy the fact that I am helping bees by providing an insecticide free environment for them. At the moment I am sowing lots of seeds in my veggie plot to grow bee loving plants.Anyone interested should contact their local bee keeping association.
  • if you want a sing a long about bringing back the bees check out Jess Goyder's video at

    We hear the clip went viral around Boris Johnson's office. Maybe BBC can use the music?
  • But when bees are busy gathering woody material for nest-building, they sometimes chew and spoil the timbers of fences and buildings, and strip the bark of trees causing die-back of branches and young shoots. For more information check out :
  • Hi Interesting post. I have a bees nest in an old bird box this year. I'm not sure what type of bee has inhabited it but they look like miniature bumble bees. It's great to have them in the garden but the box is only about 3feet away from my 3yr old's swing which is a bit worrying. The swarm seems very relaxed and placid but not sure what to do about this really. advice would be good?

  • please be carefull how you phrase the context of bees doing the damage Sidrah,wasps and their genera do the damage NOT Apis melis the humble honey bee..yes wasps take minute particles to build their "paper" wonderdomes..but not stripping trees in THIS country,fear not.

    I have some fungus growing on some old carpet that I left on patio slabs last year. Looks like Yellow Brain, frizzy edges and translucent. Could it be anything else and as it was close to house does it pose a danger.
  • Please can you tell me what to feed my two fig trees which are in an unheated greenhouse and never have a decent amount of figs and they have been there for at least 20 years. Should I give them a good water and feed them I have cut them back like they told me last Friday on Gardeners World.
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