Bees provide us with our food supply. That is pretty important. For humans who eat plants and animals, they are extremely significant. They pollinate plants that we and the animals eat. You get the picture – without bees, we’re sunk!
But they are in danger. BIG danger as their numbers are decreasing every year. Why? We all need to step in to fight this!
What can you do to help honey bees? Below are three important steps we should take to make sure we have our honey bees for years to come.
Step #1: DO NOT USE SYNTHETIC PESTICIDES AS THEY HARM HONEY BEES!
A pesticide is anything that kills, repels, mitigates, destroys or damages a ‘pest’. Typically, pesticides are ‘insecticides’ which means they go after insects. There are plenty of natural substances that can accomplish what you need. Examples: cedar chests and closets keep moths away from your clothes. Citronella is used in candles to repel mosquitoes.
But most insecticide products today are synthetic. They don’t exist in Nature but instead are Frankenstein chemicals. And they are everywhere. They are used in our homes, schools and businesses. They are used on food crops. They are even used in drinking water to control mosquito larva. Tons of these man-made toxic chemicals are applied every year.
At what cost? Well, honey bees and other pollinators are also ‘controlled’ (meaning: killed) by these same synthetic pesticides. Butterflies? Toast. Honey Bees? Toast. All that is important for our food supply is compromised by these toxic chemicals.
Europe bans many of these poisons specifically to protect bees. Unfortunately, these same franken-chemicals have government blessings in the United States.
Every time you use a synthetic pesticide, you are contributing to a toxic world. ONLY USE NATURAL PESTICIDES THAT DO NOT HARM HONEY BEES!
A great line of pest control products are Greenbug. The active ingredient in Greenbug is cedar – just like cedar chests and closets where you never see a bug! You can choose Greenbug for People/Pets to protect yourself from mosquitoes, ticks, chiggers, etc. And you can use Greenbug Ready to Use or Greenbug Concentrate in and around your home and property to control pests. No Greenbug product harms honey bees in any way!
Step # 2: Plant with honey bees in mind.
A variety of plant sources gives bees an array of nutrients to help combat stress and other problems. Planting those that bloom at different times of the year helps pollinators to maintain a healthy food supply.
This doesn’t have to be acres of wildflowers. And it doesn’t have to be expensive – you can grow things from seed packets. As long as you provide something for them that is NOT swimming in toxic chemicals, you are a friend to honey bees. A few examples are:
Spring bloomers: Crocus bulbs, borage, calendula, Holly and lilac.
Summer bloomers: Bee Balm, Echinacea (coneflower), Cosmos and Hosta
Fall bloomers: Asters, Goldenrod, Witch Hazel and Eleagnus
The list is endless. There are also annuals to throw into the mix so that you can easily (and inexpensively) have something in bloom whenever they are active.
Step #3: Start talking about honey bees.
Begin the dialog about the status of our honey bees. Many people have no idea they are declining. And if they have heard it, may not understand why it is a problem.
Most people believe that concerns like this are addressed by the government and are not an individual’s problem. But this issue will need a groundswell of concerned citizens.
Talk to decision makers. At your child’s school, request they use natural products instead of synthetic chemicals. (Let us know because we have an entire protocol for natural pest control in schools available!) If possible, engage your local government to consider options that avoid man-made poisons. Share this information with friends, family and neighbors so that more people are educated.
We need our honey bees and it is up to us to make sure they are safe! At Greenbug, we’re ‘All In’ to helping protect our honey bees!