News & Opinion | March 23, 2019 5:00 am

What To Plant In Your Garden To Help Bees

Herbs are some of the most useful plants on Earth.

(Getty Images)
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Thanks to the growing popularity of cultivating your own herbs, bees have been benefiting from the popularity as well.

“It is mostly the abundant nectar that brings the bees in,” Francis Drummon, an insectology professor at the University of Maine, said. “Some of the more attractive herbs to bees are thyme, comfrey, borage, oregano, bee’s friend, lemon balm, rosemary, hyssop, sage, lavender and chives.”

Planting and growing herbs in your garden is a great way to attract bees- they love the bright colors (they don’t use a sense of smell to find their favorite flowers), and helps with pollination.

Bees also don’t care which herb they find either. “I don’t think a bee minds if an herb is native or non-native,” he said. “Lavender and anything in the catnip family are particularly attractive to bees.”

David Trinklein, an Extension horticulturist at the University of Missouri, says that bees don’t mind if the herb is native or non-native and that “anything in the catnip family [is] particularly attractive to bees.”

All kinds of bees are attracted to herb gardens from the big fat honey bee to smaller bees that pollinate littler herbs like dill and fennel. Another benefit, for humans, of planting an herb garden is the wonderful scent that lingers during warm, sunny days.