Monthly Image: Bees in Squash Flower

Back in August, the squash vines were in full flower:

Bees in Squash Flower - overview
Bees in Squash Flower – overview

Here’s a closer look:

Bees in Squash Flower - detail
Bees in Squash Flower – detail

Pop quiz: how many bees do you count?

With the benefit of watching them move, I counted nine bees in that blossom!

Winter squash vines bear large flowers (that blossom is the size of my outstretched hand) that attract large bees: bumblebees and their cousins, carpenter bees. Quite often, bumblebees spend the night huddled inside the blossom and emerge early the next day when they reach flying temperature. Honeybees, being more social, return to their hives overnight; we’re pleased to see that there’s at least one feral hive in the neighborhood.

4 thoughts on “Monthly Image: Bees in Squash Flower

  1. Great picture!

    Bumblebees are great pollinators–we get a lot of them on the tomato plants in the greenhouse. When I had to squirrel-proof [so far, so good through 1.5 growing seasons] the windows, I searched for a suitable squirrel-strainer. Rabbit cage stock is perfect, since it passes big bees and stops squirrels. IIRC, 1″ x 0.5″ mesh, sold in 24″ wide rolls. Chipmunks might be able to get through, but they can’t get to the windows.

    1. Chipmunks might be able to get through

      I think a chipmunk could get through a soda straw if it wanted to… [grin]

      Mary uses two feet of inch-hex poultry netting to keep the rabbits out, which has no visible effect on the ‘munks. On the other paw, they probably run through the gaps by the gate like a highway. Mostly, they’re not a problem, although seeing a chipmunk perched on a stone surrounded by nibbled cherry tomatoes does annoy her…

      1. Maybe a milkshake straw. [grin]. I did a 1/4″ hardware cloth strainer to keep chippies out of the airbox. That worked, except for the bugger who set up shop just upstream of the mesh.

        FWIW, if you have similar problems, pop the hood when you store the vehicle in the garage. No heat, no privacy, no critters. We do it for the road vehicles, but the garden and utility tractors never attracted any.

        Not sure what ate our bean plants. I’m guessing rabbit, but chipmunks raided the trap with salad fixings without setting off the hav-a-heartless trap. Julie is allergic to cats and the dogs think of them as poachers. [sigh]
        At least half-barrels and modified much-buckets work.

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