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Old 04-12-2013, 10:48 AM   #1
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I saw a queen searching around in my yard yesterday here in VA!!
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Old 04-12-2013, 11:05 AM   #2
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No bumbles yet but plenty of carpenter bees and paper wasps.
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Old 04-17-2013, 02:56 PM   #3
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Wait, wait! Yes, they are out and about! It's hard to tell them from the carpenter bees this time of year because they are extremely active and on the move so I can't see their furry bottoms as well. I noticed them in the field yesterday so I knew they weren't carpenter bees and now they are looking for nectar near the house. Now that the fothergilla is blooming they are swarming with bees and I saw some Eastern tiger swallowtails there this morning too.

It's 87 degrees out there now (what???) with severe thunderstorms coming our way. I hope they do come (without the hail and threatening tornados that usually accompany these cold fronts coming behind the hot tropical air we have now) to water the gardens and cool us down to the 60s where we belong this time of year.
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Old 04-17-2013, 03:01 PM   #4
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I found one dead in my green house along with a live one buzzing around. After showing her where the exit was she started exploring holes and things under logs for a place to make a nest. I'm not sure if any of them took though.

Today I see them collecting nectar.
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Old 04-17-2013, 03:05 PM   #5
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Where we belong.....Braggart.

I woke up all raring to go and rake the leaves from the emerging tulips...My hubby announced, it's only 29 degrees out there. Soooooo I waited until it warmed a bit, then put in and hour and a half of raking and moving some of the Spring bulbs into the new H. bed. I see what you mean about the chickweed. It was already laying there all bright and green in wait under the leaves.
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Old 04-18-2013, 05:48 AM   #6
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So sorry hava! I'm just tellin' it like it is here! Hey, I'm no stranger to colder climes after living in New England for over 20 years so I am empathetic. I do remember one year where my cabin fever was so bad the kids and I made a giant snow Easter bunny and I dug out snowbanks just so I could see the lupine bed, just to see and smell the earth again. You'll get your revenge when we're sweltering down here in the sub-tropical heat of summer while you're enjoying soft summer breezes off the lakes and actually able to go outside in July and August!

Good luck with the chickweed. I've got to get mulch down before it rears its ugly head again from the last go round.
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Old 04-18-2013, 07:48 AM   #7
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Mulch! What's that?
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Old 04-19-2013, 12:21 AM   #8
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Is anyone trying to get bumble bees to nest in a box, or creating natural habitat spots for them to nest? This article from the Xerces Society has some good information on habitat requirements, as well as information on how to build a nest box (page 28). The guidelines are downloadable as a PDF; just click on the underlined title in the quote.

Conserving Bumble Bees

Guidelines for Creating and Managing Habitat for America’s Declining Pollinators
Quote:
Creating, protecting and restoring habitat is a very important way to conserve the populations of bees that remain. To help landowners and managers achieve this, the Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation has just released Conserving Bumble Bees. Guidelines for Creating and Managing Habitat for America’s Declining Pollinators.
The Xerces Society Conserving Bumble Bees
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Old 04-19-2013, 10:59 PM   #9
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I'm hoping to put out some bumble bee nest boxes this spring. I would also like to start a bumble bee nest with a freshly emerged queen, but I don't know if I am going to have the spare time to do that. The late spring we are having may make that possible, but there are a lot of things that I would have to get done before the warm weather arrives.
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Old 04-20-2013, 11:41 AM   #10
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No bees sighted in the garden yet but this coming week should produce enough warmth and blooms for me to catch a picture or two. We have bumbles nest in the garden each year and find several solitary bee species. Just provide native flowers, a place to nest and a safe haven for winter. Rock walls, brush piles, undisturbed slow compost, most wildlife gardens provide ample spaces.
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