Good Plants & Shrubs For Bees


Vetches - (Vicia) is a genus of about 140 species of flowering plants that are part of the legume family (Fabaceae). Member species are native to Europe, North America, South America, Asia and Africa. It is of historical importance in plant taxonomy as the namesake of the order Fabales, the Fabaceae and the Faboideae. Among the closest living relatives of vetches are the lentils (Lens) and the true peas.

This ancient plant is known to have been cultivated 9,500 years ago, In our time, the common vetch (V. sativa) has also risen to prominence. Together with broad bean cultivars such as horse bean or field bean, the Food and Agriculture Organization includes it among the 11 most important pulses in the world. The main usage of the common vetch is as forage for ruminant animals, both as fodder and legume, but there are other uses, as tufted vetch, V. cracca is grown as a mid-summer pollen source for honeybees.

Foxgloves Photo credit: Kurt Stüber

Foxgloves - (Digitalis), is a genus of about 20 species of herbaceous perennials, shrubs, and biennials commonly called foxgloves.The scientific name means "finger-like" and refers to the ease with which a flower of Digitalis purpurea can be fitted over a human fingertip. The flowers are produced on a tall spike, are tubular, and vary in colour with species, from purple to pink, white, and yellow. The best-known species is the common foxglove, Digitalis purpurea.

This biennial plant is often grown as an ornamental plant due to its vivid flowers which range in colour from various purple tints through various shades of light gray, and to purely white. The flowers can also possess various marks and spottings. The first year of growth of the common foxglove produces only the stem with its long, basal leaves. During the second year of the plant's life, a long, leafy stem from 50 to 255 centimetres tall grows atop the roots of healthy plants.

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