Plants for attracting bees
Shop our selection of the best plants for attracting bees and other pollinating insects into the garden. Wild bees have been in decline for some time, so any help we provide by planting in a bee-friendly way can make all the difference. As well as being ecologically friendly, growing plants to welcome bees helps with pollinating your fruit and vegetable garden, such as apples, strawberries and tomatoes. A mixed planting scheme including a wide range of these plants gives the best opportunity to entice bumblebees into the garden and sustain them through the year. Choose plants with bright or fragrant, nectar-rich flowers with different shapes and flowering periods spanning from early spring to late autumn. Fully double flowers are generally best avoided as the interior petals make it difficult for bees to access the stamen and these flowers tend to be low in nectar and pollen. Different bee species have different length tongues that are adapted to feed from different shaped flowers. Longer tongued species prefer deeper flowers such as foxglove and honeysuckle, whilst some shallower, more open flowers are needed to support species with shorter tongues. Some of the best varieties are foxglove, hellebore, honeysuckle, Echinops, Hebes, asters, lavender, sedum and verbena.