Bee on flowerIf your edible plants aren’t producing the harvest you would like, it could be lack of flower pollination.  Flowers that have not been pollinated will not seed, set or form fruit.

By adding flowering plants that produce lots of pollen and nectar, you will attract the best pollinators in the business, bees.   Luring bees to your garden will increase the likelihood your edible plants will get pollinated and you will get food.

Also important to attracting more bees is to leave area of bare soil for native bees to lay their eggs underground.  As little as one square foot will work.  Native bees are great pollinators too and they love our native plants!

I have collected some of the best bee attracting plants you can add to your garden:

Rosemary (Rosemarinus officinalis) Pollinating bees are attracted to the blooms of this easy to grow evergreen.  Blooms in early spring through the end of summer.  Likes full sun and hot and dry footing in well drained soil. Drought resistant.  Grows from 1’ to 6’ in height and 2’ to 4’ wide. Aromatic needles can be used as an herb in cooking.

Bumble beeWall Germander (Teucrium chamaedrys) This creeping evergreen grows 6 to 18 inches in height. Pink, purple, or lavender tubular shaped blooms appear in May.  Aromatic leaves resemble miniature oak leaves. Plant in well drained soil. Medium water, drought tolerant. Full sun.

Sonoma Sage (Salvia sonomensis) This California native is a mat forming sub-shrub that grows to 12 inches in height.  Lavender flowers rise 6 inches above foliage.  Thrives in light shade and well drained soil.  Will not tolerate regular water during summer months.

Point Reyes Ceanothus (Ceanothus gloriosus ‘Anchor Bay’) Lavender flowers appear from March to May on this mounding ground cover.  Leathery, glossy, holly shaped leaves.  This California native thrives in well drained soil and light shade.

Coffeberry (Rhamnus californica ‘Eve Case’) Smaller than the species, this adaptable California native shrub grows to 3’ wide by 3’ high making for a good informal screen or hedge.  Yellow flowers appear in the spring.  Plant in sun or partial shade in well drained soil.