Growing Bee Balm

I found Bee Balm (also known as Bergamot) in a garden nursery in a section of plants labeled “adored by bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds.” I liked the color of this variety, and bees and butterflies are most attracted to blue and purple flowers.

I was interested in this fact because we are in the midst of a honey bee crisis – colonies are collapsing everywhere. The next time you are in the produce section of the grocery store, consider this: agricultural crops worldwide are pollinated by bees. Often bees are shipped into areas to pollinate crops. If we don’t take an interest in what is happening to bees, we may soon see empty produce bins and shelves. You must also consider all the plant life that sustains the animals we eat as well (e.g., cows, sheep, pigs). Bees are essential to our survival!

You will not be disappointed by the show of wildlife attracted to Bee Balm.

If you’re a gardener, you should add this perennial to a sunny space in your yard. If you live in a hot climate like I do, this plant is ideal. The only negative characteristic of Bee Balm is that it is a “spreader” like mint, so you’ll have to periodically extract portions from the growing area or it will overtake everything.

I enjoy the blooms in the spring and fall.

Bee Balm like other herbs can be used to make a tea or added to other food to enhance flavor.

  • For tea: Place a tablespoon of fresh or one teaspoon of dried Bee Balm leaves and/or flowers in a tea strainer and pour one cup of boiling water over it. Allow it to steep for ten minutes. Remove tea strainer. Sweeten as you like.
  • Chop the leaves and flowers finely and add to fruit salads for extra flavor.

Other posts which discuss bees:

Use Beer to Eliminate Garden Slugs

Garden Slugs in Beer
Beer is a great organic slug zapper.

When I found garden slugs on my peppers, which I thought were immune to such creatures, I had to do something. I heard that beer in a low dish would attract and kill slugs. Guess what? It does.

Beer is the answer! This picture is proof. Who knew getting rid of slugs could be so easy?

Use Beer to Eliminate Garden Slugs!

Word gets around fast about free beer, and before you know it, there’s not enough room in the dish for all of the party-goers. Choose this organic solution rather than poison. Set a few dishes of cheap beer in your garden, let them fill up with critters, dump, and start again. In a few days, your slug problem will be history.

Winter Rose Photo

I have been carefully watching this winter rose come to full bloom in my garden. The cool weather has created a beauty. Texas summer heat has a tendency to dwarf blooms. This pink blossom draws one outside to appreciate its loveliness.

Winter Rose