We all love to establish bee-friendly spaces in our gardens, but lack of space is a common problem for many of us. Fantastic research done by the researchers of the University of Sussex is of great help to the people having the same issue. The researchers have shown that a small 4m2 space is enough to provide a perfect habitat for significant pollinators such as bees. But how is this possible? Establishing "mini-meadows" is the best way to utilize a small space. Let us know in detail about this and how it can help us in a significant way?
The team of researchers includes Janine Griffiths-Lee, Dr. Beth Nicholls, and Professor Dave Goulson, who has worked to investigate the effectiveness of "mini-meadows." Commercially available seed mixes were used to make "mini meadows," and studies have shown that such meadows supported on average 111% more bumblebees than control plots where no wildflowers had been sown.
In England and Wales, about 97% of wildflower meadows were lost by 1984. However, there is a chance to help pollinator populaces in metropolitan areas and more rural ones, and it was found that it is not necessary to have ample space to do so. Flower patches at a small scale can attract beneficial insects in urban areas, thereby supporting pollination services.
But What Is the Meadow Mix?
Meadow mix is an incredible mix of flower seeds to draw in honey bees the entire season. The meadow will give pollen and nectar to keep up with the hive's wellbeing. Every one of the blossoms picked produces top-notch pollen. There are no brassicas in the mixture. Even though brassicas produce a ton of pollen, the grown plants are very vigorous and will out-compete the other flowers. Brassica-rich honey tends to crystallize rapidly, making the extraction process an issue. The Bee Meadow perennial mix contains 24 different varieties - enough for even the fussiest of bees!
Choosing the Best Site?
All wildflowers are suitable for all conditions. A site with full sun and excellent drainage is excellent for some species, yet numerous others can tolerate partial shade and wet regions. Consider your site and soil conditions cautiously to make "mini-meadows."
It's ideal to begin in a small region; however, consider 400 square feet to be a minimum size - this space can uphold a decent variety of wildflower species. A few types of wildflowers get very tall and tend to lean or flop, but they will help hold each other up if planted densely in an area where they will not interfere with walkways or other landscape features. A wildflower meadow is casual ordinarily and can be wild and untidy looking at certain times of the year, so find it where it will be seen from a few meters or more. For a neater, more planned mini-meadow look, buy small transplants instead of beginning from seed, and plant in purposeful groupings as in a nursery.
A place where honey bees can forage securely, collect good quality nectar & produce unpasteurized honey with little disturbance or openness to pesticides or other family synthetics is excellent. To make their homes, numerous local honey bees need patches of bare soil close by; others will settle in tiny openings in deadwood or stems, cavities in stone walls, or leaf litter or debris piles. These elements are frequently found along the edges of fields or forests and ought to be saved. Some individuals construct or buy honey bee boxes or houses to energize artisan honey bees and other single honey bees to settle close to their yields or gardens.
According to Mr. Basem Barry, founder & CEO of Geohoney, mini-meadow is a changing landscape. Climate varieties, soil conditions, and natural life will determine which wildflowers and grasses become predominant and what disappears after some time. So take a step back and partake in the changes because – meadow is not a product; it is a process that will benefit you and the bees!