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Bee/Butterfly friendly flowers, but space efficient. :)



  • FoxBatFoxBat Posts: 9

    Cheers Victoria Sponge, exactly what I was after. image

    Verbena/Salvia/Veronica I did order this year actually, but I was expecting plug plants and got bits of root, that didn't grow. image They're supposed to send a replacement this season so fingers crossed.

    I'll investigate the others you mentioned and put them in my spreadsheet for next years planting, so many thanks once again. image

  • FoxBatFoxBat Posts: 9


    I've put Borage in, very big 'awkward' plant, but a smaller type of bee (lighter coloured) seems to love them. We have Chives (quite mature), Rosemary (smells but no flowers), Thyme which seems to do better in a pot as the previous two died when I put them out. Also Oreganum (from seed). Now just need to work out how to use them in cooking!

    bekkie hughes 

    I'd consider anything! image I'm a bit geeky so any suggestions I'm putting in a Spreadsheet, with things like height/width etc. So I can work out if they'd be suitable. I'm favouring things that don't take up much room as I wasted a lot of space this year with 'goudy' plants that are now in the compost bin after flowering.



    Many thanks I'll look into these too, particularly Erysimum.

    Thanks to everyone for the suggestions so far, if it's any use to anyone, one of the 'tools' I use in deciding on what to plant is:

    It lets you quickly filter by name/colour/flowering month(s)/type, and gives each flower a score as to nectar value. I've found there are some missing I think should be on, and the scores can be subjective but it's been quite useful as a reference. image

  • pansyfacepansyface PEAK DISTRICT DerbyshirePosts: 18,863

    Let's not forget the moths. Night scented stock - it does flop so you can grow it in deep pots.

    Apophthegm -  a big word for a small thought.
  • soulboysoulboy Posts: 429

    I have a small garden, too, in which I plant to attract bees, butterflies and other insects such as hoverflies. I definitely agree with some of the suggestions already mentioned.

    Lacy phacelia for example, is wonderful for attracting bees but it will get quite large and dominate the space it's in. Although other flowers will grow through it.

    If you've got space a climbing nasturtium is another plant that bees adore. I also have some non-climbing varieties in baskets.

    Some butterflies love the marigolds (French petite) that I plant every year. Peacock butterflies and some of the smaller brown butterflies love them. I also plant Tagetes for the same reason.

    Pot marigolds (Calendulaofficinalis) attract butterflies and bees to the garden.

    As has been mentioned, snapdragons are great for bees.

    For early to mid-summer the Aquilegia (alpina) I have attracts huge numbers of bees and is a beautiful blue colour.

    I also have a small Escallonia (pruned regularly to fit the small space) that produces wonderful small white flowers all through summer that the smaller bees love.

  • soulboysoulboy Posts: 429

    I forgot to add that I grow lots of sunflowers, which all the bees love.

  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 41,303

    Don't forget to go vertical - I've got Cotoneaster - you can have it against a wall  or fence so it takes very little room. Mine are smothered with bees and then you have the berries for birds later on. I also have some dwarf ones  in large 'window boxes' on top of one of the fences. If you have a wall or fence you could have some troughs on it full of herbs as Bamboogie suggests - thyme will grow particularly well in that situation -  and I've also got nasturtiums in pots (and the boxes) which the bees are enjoying. They're dead easy   image

    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

  • Agastache, common name Anise Hyssop is always covered in bees, summer to late autumn. Also Echinacea and Rudbeckia. Butterflies love them too. 

  • Dave MorganDave Morgan Posts: 3,123

    I haven't seen coreopsis mentioned, mine are covered in bees and other insects.

  • FoxBatFoxBat Posts: 9

    Cheers for all the suggestions so far folks, it's given me lots of ideas. image

    Sunflowers - Yes we put in some dwarf multi-headed ones, good job too as the rest of the garden is looking a bit past it's best now, but these are still going very strong.

    Coreopsis. - I have a variety (sunburst?) but I found it to be too droopy and just smothered everything around it.

    Echinaceas/Rudbeckia - Agreed though I've found these very difficult to grow from seed, a few are growing now and one of the Echinacea produced a single  beautiful blue/purple flower so hopefully I'll have a better showing with these next year. image

  • This is a very interesting post - really helpful, thank you!

    I'm trying to set a current plot of waste land (boundary between my house and nature reserve) up with stuff like this, so thank you for all the recommendations.

    Looks like i've got my work cut out for me in testing how squirrel proof some of these are!


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