I have always tried to make sure that I grow plants which bees like and have often been surprised by their choices. This black elder, which I love, has such tiny flowers I didn't think bees would be interested in it and grew it for my own pleasure, but they love it. It is smothered with flowers this year and a wild elder just up the road from us is covered in flowers. There'll be plenty of berries for the birds this autumn.
A close-up of a flowerhead. Each time I focused the camera the breeze blew so I had to hold it steady.
I used to spend ages trying to get close-ups of bees on various plants but have given up - there are too many other things which need doing! Across the lawn is what we call a sage bush - it's that one in the middle. I'm sure it has a proper name but I can't remember it and the garden encyclopaedia is downstairs and I've been gardening all afternoon and am too tired to fetch it. The leaves are very sage like and the little yellow flowers are like those of sage but in little round clusters. The bees like this plant too.
A couple of weeks ago my husband went to see if the compost in one of our bins was ready for use and noticed a lot of buzzing when he began to lift it. He hastily replaced it and now we daren't investigate any further. Every time we go near, there are as many as a dozen large bumblebees going in and out of the holes in the sides of the bin. I am quite honoured that they like our garden so much, but I would like to be able to make use of the compost. I think we are going to have to learn about the habits of bumblebees so that we can live amicably together.