We caught up with gardening expert and former Gardeners World presenter, Alys Fowler, to find out why we should be doing more to help encourage bees into the garden this summer.
Why is it important to encourage bees to thrive in your garden?
Bees are very important pollinators and pollinate many of the crops we eat. They are also essential for maintaining the general health of our ecosystem.
How easy is it for an average person to do their bit to help the bee population?
Very easy. You just have to enjoy gardening, avoid using any chemicals and plant lots of nectar and pollen rich flowers. Your average cottage garden subjects are perfect for this; such as geraniums, marigolds, violas, alliums, rosemary, lavender, thyme, and simple roses.
Do you have any top tips for a beginner gardener looking to grow green thumbs?
Buy a packet of mixed salad leaves and sow it. They are incredibly easy to grow and you will be rewarded quickly. From there you can start to tackle other vegetables.
What are the most important jobs to be doing in your garden at this time of year?
Enjoying it mainly. You also need to be weeding and watering; although you should only be watering in the evenings, as if you water at midday you will lose water through evaporation. You should also be feeding your pot plants; particularly tomatoes and any vegetables you are growing.
What do gardeners need to keep in mind before starting a DIY project?
It’s always good to keep in mind that it’s probably going to take a lot longer than you think. Basic health and safety is also important, ensuring you have a stable place to saw and wearing sensible footwear. Always seek advice or get all of the information you need before starting a project.
What inspires you in your own garden?
Bees, butterflies and all of the wildlife that come to visit, as well as trying to grow wonderful tasting vegetables.
What advice do you have for someone who finds gardening daunting?
Have a go. Just don’t try to do it all at once. Start from your back door to frame the view of your garden that you look at most days. Once that is done, work on the rest.
Information courtesy of Wickes, for more information please visit www.wickes.co.uk