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May 24, 2019

Brigit's Garden supports the bees!

A quick visit to the raspberry bushes at Brigit’s Garden will reveal many bees hard at work collecting nectar and pollinating the flowers. Downward-hanging pendent flowers like raspberry and fuchsia are sheltered from the rain and are an important source of nectar for bees. Often the bees are seen visiting the flowers in light rain when other flowers are ignored.

If we look closer at our fuchsia with its long flowering period, we can see how valuable this is for bees. In a spell of poor weather when they cannot leave the hive, bees could completely miss a short flowering period.

Hawthorn is also an excellent supplier of pollen and it is easy to recognise the pale white pollen loads in the bees’ pollen baskets. At the time when brood rearing is at its peak, this fresh pollen is invaluable.

In our herb garden we have pollinator-friendly herbs such as sage, fennel and thyme and we use no pesticides or herbicides that would harm the bees.

In Ireland, we have 99 bee species: one honeybee; 21 bumblebees and 77 solitary bee species. It is actually our wild bumblebees and solitary bees that are responsible for most pollination. If we are serious about protecting them, then we must take action now.

The All Ireland Pollinator Plan is brilliant, with tips and actions that will really make a difference. For example, this month, why not let the dandelions grow before cutting the lawn? Dandelions provide a vital source of spring food for pollinators. Join the All-Ireland Pollinator plan, even if you are large scale farmer or a balcony gardener – there is something everyone can do.

Honey in the Garden Café

The Garden Café has created this vibrant and delicious seasonal dish using West of Ireland Local Honey.

Beetroot & Goats Cheese Terrine: Layers of thin beetroot marbled with creamy goats’ cheese, local honey and thyme, candied walnuts served with edible flowers and garden salad.

Date for the diary: Lughnasa/Harvest Seasonal Walk

Learn more about foraging for wild herbs, seeds and fruits, take a closer look at the flowers on show in the Celtic Gardens and explore the traditions surrounding Lughnasa/Harvest time of year on Sunday August 4th with Jenny Beale, Founder of Brigit’s Garden. Learn more.



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