Thursday, May 16, 2013

Gold standard

If I had any sense I'd probably have dug out the dandelions in the gardens long before now because they seed themselves so prolifically, but instead I've been watching the constant stream of bees - with their pollen baskets stuffed full of orange dandelion pollen - visiting the flowers all afternoon. There are golden drifts of dandelion flowers everywhere just now - along road verges, on waste ground and in pastures - and every year they provide a reliable source of vast amounts of pollen and nectar for bees.

The strange thing is, though, that dandelions don't need nectar, pollen or pollinators to produce a full crop of seeds - for the reason why, click here.




















Africa Gomez, over at Bugblog, has more pictures of some of dandelions' many insect visitors in spring.




6 comments:

  1. Thank you for the plug Phil. I was thinking exactly that today, the verges in our street are looking beautiful, with drifts of dandelion and daisy and the kids enjoyed blowing the first clocks today. This is of course, to the despair of the local neighbours association!

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  2. "Round-Up" should get rid of the buggers but I am not sure what the bees would think about that. Fascinating blog by the way - from a first time visitor. How do you do.

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  3. Dandelion inflorescences are great places for insect watching aren't they Africa?

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  4. Pleased to meet you Yorkshire Pudding - thanks for the kind comment...

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  5. I can't praise dandelions enough. For many gardeners, it seems it is the 'proper' thing to do to remove them. Just today I watched several butterfly species in a local nature reserve searching for the dandelion flowers, there was little else in bloom. Orange tips and green-veined whites fed on them. On top of that, they are great value for a wildlife gardener - free!

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  6. They seem to attract plenty of the smaller bee species (which I struggle to identify), don't they Africa? And they are such convenient locations for photographing insects........

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