If you want to provide insects with a source of food but don’t have a garden, go for bee-friendly balcony flowers. Because it is no longer a secret: honey bees and bumblebees, as well as many other insects, are simply indispensable for the fertilization of our crops. But due to the many large-scale monocultures in agriculture, the animals do not always find enough food.
Bee-friendly balcony flowers as well as ornamental plants and herbs in gardens can, however, at least partially cover the need for nectar and pollen. Even varied pots and boxes on balconies and terraces can help honeybees and other bees – it’s just a matter of choosing the right varieties. Not all classic summer bloomers are bee-friendly balcony flowers.
Especially popular species such as geraniums and petunias, which bloom profusely throughout the summer, are useless from the point of view of insects. Also plants with double flowers, as a rule, the supply of pollen and nectar is very small.
These balcony flowers are food plants for bees and other insects
Nevertheless, there are many attractive bee-friendly balcony flowers. For example, among annual summer flowers, these include sweet alison (Lobularia maritima), zinnia (Zinnia violacea), common fan-flower (Scaevola aemula), common heliotrope (Heliotropium arborescens), and mealy sage (Salvia farinacea). Those who like to seed plants themselves can easily grow nasturtiums (Tropaeolum majus) and sweet mace (Tagetes lucida) or wildflower mixtures.
Perennials are also suitable as bee-friendly balcony plants. Their advantage is that you do not have to replant them every year. Preferably choose long flowering species such as annual mallow (Malva trimestris), purple coneflower (Echinacea purpurea), live-forever (Hylotelephium spectabile) and cranesbill. Those who plant herbs also make a good choice, because lemon balm, sage, thyme and savory not only refine our dishes, but also provide food for numerous insects.
What else you can do for bees
- It is ideal if there are flowers on the balcony and terrace from early spring to autumn. Pollen and nectar plants are often missing, especially at the beginning and end of the season.
- Refrain from using chemical pesticides, as these can cause considerable harm to bees
- Offer wild bees and other beneficial insects a place for their offspring, for example in the form of a self-built insect hotel
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