Ways to save the bees
Some people say HURAH the honey bees are dieing off. (because they are european and african invaders) but the reality is that it is all bees and it is worldwide. The native bees are dieing off too. I heard recently that 3 bumble bee species died out in England and at least one in Ontario. It is EVERYWHERE. And that is really scary.
In BC people drill holes in wood for orchard mason bees. But what about the other types? They are actually very specific in hole diameter and the time and temp that you put them out so that the other types do NOT get in.
This is playing favoirtes. There are lots of types of burrowing bees and many of them cannot make their own holes.
This year I started on something new. Making holes in cob or mud, with different types and diameters of metal bar. So bike spokes, knitting needles, up to half inch and more. All in the one block of mud or cob. (It sets up hard It needs a little roof) and the bees start using it. For shelter! I did not even think that the solitary bees need somewhere safe at night. Now a month or so later, they (seems to be a different type) are laying their eggs in it and blocking the holes. So it WORKS!
So that is mark 1 or version 1.
Another thing I noticed is that little bees burrow throught the soft pith of raspberry canes and of grape vines. So if you compost all your old raspberry canes, you are probably killing a bunch of bees!
Mark 2 will have the mud with raspberry canes, different weeds with pithy stems and grape vines layered through it.
And still holes in the mud.
Anyone want to try and report what happens? Its an "open source" project and I will put it on appropedia shortely.
The more info we get from different areas the better. I would like it to spread quickly so please do it and tell people your results and tell your gardner friends too.
I have pics of some of the different types somewhere too.