There are many reasons to be a honey bee enthusiast. From their fascinating behavior to the invaluable work they do, honey bees are worthy of admiration. However, not everyone has the chance to commit to a life of beekeeping. How can you show your support for these powerful pollinators without donning the bee suit? Learn how to participate in the honey bee hype with these ideas for how to save the bees without becoming a beekeeper.
Avoid Pesticides in Your Garden
How would you feel if you dug into a tasty meal only to find it covered in toxic chemicals? When you use pesticides, insecticides, and other chemical solutions in your garden, you make your flowers dangerous for honey bees and other local pollinators. Check the ingredients in your pesticides before you use them. Try to find organic and natural solutions instead, such as pesticides made with garlic, kaolin clay, or other ingredients that are safe for honey bees. Additionally, spraying your garden at or after dusk—when honey bees retreat to their hives for the day—gives natural pesticides a chance to dissolve and become harmless before any pollinators visit your plants.
Make Your Yard Pollinator-Friendly
In addition to avoiding chemicals, you can make your garden a welcoming spot for honey bees and other local pollinators by planting a variety of flowers and setting up a drink station. Plant a diverse range of pollinator-friendly seeds that will flower at different times throughout the season, so the honey bees always have something to forage. If you don’t have a garden, try to let weeds like dandelions grow to flowers to provide food for your local pollinating population. You can also set out a safe drinking station for the honey bees. Place a clean, shallow dish of water in your yard. Add sticks and rocks to give the bees a safe place to rest while they drink. Creating a safe place in your yard for pollinators is a huge part of how to save the bees without becoming a beekeeper.
Support Local Beekeepers
There are many ways to support local beekeepers and the work they do. Visit your neighborhood farmers’ market to purchase honey and other beehive products. Some apiaries even let you adopt a hive and support it financially while the beekeeper puts the work into keeping your bees safe and healthy. If someone keeps beehives in your neighborhood, respect their space and encourage your neighbors not to disturb the hives. Finally, you can work with beekeepers to keep honey bees in the community safe. If you spot a swarm, call a beekeeper instead of an exterminator. They’ll be able to safely relocate the swarm without harming the colony.
Of course, beekeeping is always a valuable way to help your local honey bee population. If you’re interested in taking your first steps as a beekeeper, you can get all the supplies you need with our beekeeping starter kit. With the right tools, educational resources, and a welcoming community at your side, you can work to keep our beloved bee populations safe.