Monday, August 2, 2021

A Celebration of Bees and Teas in the Riley Park Community Garden


Welcome to our celebration of recent projects we've accomplished at the Riley Park Community Garden celebrating the plants that support our cherished neighbourhood pollinators. We sipped herbal tea made from the garden while this yellow-headed bumble bee drank nectar from this vibrant zinnia.

If you look carefully at the sedum around our pollinator border, you might see a tiny leafcutter bee supping her own sweet tea.


We have two new butterfly BINGO cards for you to enjoy, as well as the other cards in the series celebrating plants and pollinators. You can use these to have fund spotting and naming the bees and the butterflies and the plants they need to thrive.


We also have some really fun cards from the Oregon Bee Project about some of the beautiful species of bees that occur in the Pacific Northwest. Please check out their website for more awesome information about our local bees.

I took small group of people looking for critters to examine up close and we found some mating shield bugs int he Moonshine yarrow.


A thirsty female common eastern bumble bee drinks from the pearly everlasting flowers.


 The fennel was very popular with a variety of bees, wasps, and ladybugs.

We found some very tiny masked bees that nest in stems. They are unusual because they carry pollen internally rather than on hairs on their body like other bees.

Teaching children to catch and release bees gives them confidence and helps them get over the fear of insects. This little guy was very proud of the bumble bee he caught in the jar. (I use plastic shaker jars from the dollar store. They have air holes at the top, which helps the children feel they are not suffocating the insects. )

And here's our favourite queen bee sampling some sweet delights from the community!

Children could also practise their netting skills by catching bubbles!



We're accumulating a nice collection of seasonal maps of the garden. Special thanks to Tom at Kapow Creative for the designs!

Selina created a beautiful seed table for folks to take home samples to plant in their own gardens. She also made the refreshing herbal tea we enjoyed.


Lunaria seeds are like small works of art.

And you can never have too many borage (aka "bee porridge") seeds! (-;

 She's packin' lots of porridge for her babies!



It's that time of the year when we see bees napping in the garden. How many sleepy bees can you find?

And don't forget to plant some calendula seeds for Ms. Melissodes with the hairy pollen pants!


Even a little zebra spider joined in the fun!


Please check out our new David Suzuki Butterfly Ranger signs when you visit the garden.



Thanks to everyone who came as guest and for all the folks who help make our garden thrive!