The plum tree, aka the flailing octopus, is once again, blooming at exactly the wrong time. After a week of warm, almost pleasant weather, we’re about to get a severe freeze which will wipe out any chance for plums. For now, the bees are all over it.

For several years, I’ve been putting out a bee house with nesting tubes for solitary mason and leafcutter bees. Every year has been a disappointment. Then, last summer I took down the bee house and this tiny, dead leafcutter bee fell out. I’m guessing it kicked the bucket in one of the empty nesting tubes.

It was the first sign that bees had taken any notice of my bee house.

So, I’ll keep trying.

Every year I try something new. In the process, I’ve accumulated a lot of bee accessories including two bee houses. This year I decided to put both out. One will have tubes with inserts for mason or spring bees, the other will have nesting tubes for leafcutter or summer bees. I was waiting until April to put the bee house up. This year the two are going up a month earlier.

After fumbling a bit and dropping a couple of screws in the vinca, the houses are up facing south on a grapevine post. The top one is full of the tubes with inserts. The bottom has smaller tubes for summer bees along with some larger tubes in case something comes along that prefers more spacious accommodations.

Mason bees need mud to plug up their nesting holes. There’s so much mud and muck from all the rain, I’m in no hurry to put out my mud bowl.

To see a lovely garden that’s a veritable beehive of activity check out the Propagator’s Blog along with other beautiful gardens from around the world.