The introduction of a new plant, Luffa aegyptiaca, to the garden has had several consequences:
- New look for the side of the house
- These great things
- Bumble bees
Carpenter bees we’ve always had in great numbers, loving up the blueberries and putting holes in the joists beneath the carport roof.
But these bees, bumbles, great, furry bumbles the size of elephants hurtling around–they’re new to the garden, especially in such noticeable numbers.
I’m very glad I’m not buzz-averse, because these things are the apex of bee-dom.
They’re all you’d ever want from the family Apidae in terms of importance and iconic presence.
And, they’re absolutely in love with the luffa blossoms, hurtling themselves with vigor to and fro them from daybreak until dawn.
Until I started looking into it, I was unaware the bumblebee was a threatened species. The Xerces Society has an interesting overview of the situation (here), including a pdf fact sheet on the subject and a plea to send in photos of sightings of three of the most endangered of the bumbles.
Every time I grow something different, especially something off-the-beaten path, like these luffas, I learn something new. And it’s usually something I never would have suspected.
Already waiting for those late winter seed catalogs so I can start picking out something wild.
What has your garden taught you this year?