For weeks I have watched the white clover in our lawn bloom, just as it did when I was a child at a different home long ago and far away. I was pleased that our refusal to use broad leaf weed killers in our yard had paid off. White clover adds nitrogen to the soil that helps the grass. But where were the bees? White clover flowers always had honey bees on them.
It had been a very cold, severe winter that probably was hard on wild pollinating insects, although they have been getting scarcer for many years. We have a variety of flowers in bloom, and until today, the only bee I'd seen in our yard this year was an occasional solitary bumblebee. That's okay, I thought. New generations will be raised and I'll see lots of bumblebees by late summer.
Yet I longed to see honey bees.
Today I looked closely at the deep purple flower spikes on a row of hosta, newly blooming. Two bees!
Excited by that discovery, I ran to the front of the house to check out the Russian sage bush. It always is a favorite of bees, but so far this year, its blooming only brought forth another solitary bumblebee. But not today. Today, it was keeping a small swarm of honey bees busy! And the bumblebee was hard at work there too.
That sage bush is so large, there's room for many more bees and I hope they show up.
As for the white clover, it is still blooming and still bee-less. I have no idea why.