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FORUMS Photography Talk by Genre Nature & Landscapes Talk 
Thread started 16 Mar 2017 (Thursday) 09:31
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Free seeds for a bee garden

 
PhotosGuy
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Post edited over 1 year ago by PhotosGuy with reason 'more'.
     
Mar 16, 2017 09:31 |  #1

Cheerios is giving away free wildflower seeds to help the bees. The website is http://www.cheerios.co​m/bringbackthebees (external link)

I ran into a problem entering my phone #, & found that it wants this format w/out spaces: xxxxxxxxxx

Good luck!

3/18 EDIT NOTE!
I just got an email that they're out of seeds. They gave away 1.5 Billion of them. Sorry!


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Picture ­ North ­ Carolina
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Mar 17, 2017 07:28 |  #2

Hi, Frank.

Helpful post but perhaps intended for your activities in the gardening or beekeepers forums you might belong to?


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PhotosGuy
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Mar 17, 2017 08:20 |  #3

Picture North Carolina wrote in post #18303235 (external link)
Hi, Frank.

Helpful post but perhaps intended for your activities in the gardening or beekeepers forums you might belong to?

Not "Nature Talk", Dan?


FrankC - 20D, RAW, Manual everything...
Classic Carz, Racing, Air Show, Flowers.
Find the light... A few Car Lighting Tips, and MOVE YOUR FEET!
Have you thought about making your own book? // Need an exposure crutch?
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Intheswamp
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Mar 17, 2017 08:20 |  #4

Thanks Frank! The website said they met their goal in regards to number of seed packets sent out but that they still have plenty packets left to give...I got mine coming. :) Never hurts to have a few more bee-friendly plants. Seems the Alabama state highway department simply wants grass on the side of the roads these days as they spray broadleaf killer and growth inhibitors vmad a couple of times a year...wiping out the clovers, mustards, butterworts, etc.,...I won't go into detail about the ragged butchering by side-arm cutters of the bushes and trees. Every/anything we can do to counter that poisoning and butchering helps.

The seed giveaway is a good thing...scratch a patch of out-of-the-way dirt up, a corner in your flowerbed or garden and plant'em!! :)

Ed


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PhotosGuy
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Mar 17, 2017 08:37 |  #5

Good for you, Ed! Don't forget to let your Milkweed grow, too. I didn't see one Monarch B-fly in all of last year, & they used to be everywhere. The year before resulted in Death in the afternoon, & not one of the 8 I had survived.


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Intheswamp
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Mar 17, 2017 08:53 |  #6

How many managed to make it to flying?

Oh, don't worry about my place...got many acres that is pretty wild. Way too much privet hedge, but the bees and wasps *love* it...but it only lasts a month or two...really only about 3-4 weeks in peek bloom. I planted some vitex negundo a few years ago...dug up some some small 1' plants from a beekeeper friends property. Vitex negundo is supposed to be *the* strain that honey bees go to like metal filings to a magnet. It also will bloom into/through the summer...good hot weather bloom. I believe Texas uses them in the medians of some of their highways/interstates. I planted them probably six years ago...the plants are now 10-12' tall and probably spread 5-6'....they cover about a 20x6 foot area. In all of this time, though, I've never, and I mean *never* seen a honey bee on the plants!!!! Bumble bees, small solitary bees, tiny wasps, big wasps, you name it...but no honey bees. Really strange. I figure these other insects need some good forage too, so I leave them growing.

Ed


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PhotosGuy
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Mar 17, 2017 12:08 |  #7

Intheswamp wrote in post #18303294 (external link)
How many managed to make it to flying?

Zero. One day there were 8. The next, nothing. And the next year, nothing at all.


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Intheswamp
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Mar 17, 2017 16:04 |  #8

:-(


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PhotosGuy
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Mar 18, 2017 21:23 |  #9

I just got an email that they're out of seeds. They gave away 1.5 Billion of them. Sorry!


FrankC - 20D, RAW, Manual everything...
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Intheswamp
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Mar 19, 2017 08:00 |  #10

That is what I call a smashing success!!! Hmm, I wonder, it must have been an international campaign or either a lot of people in the USA got several packages. Including everybody from newborns to the centenarians, from the healthy to the comotose, the USA has 319 million people in it. That would be four to five packets per individual at those numbers.

That will hopefully help the bees. Seriously, honey bees need acres and acres to support a normal sized colony, but this will definitely help them. If people wouldn't be so antiseptic about their yards and farms it would help the bees greatly. Old fence rows, overgrown with "weeds" were called "hedge rows" years ago in some regions from the use of osage/mock orange trees/bushes to create natural fences (*very* thorny). Other areas simply used wire to contain livestock. Before the arrival of Round-Up :-( the wire fences would become overgrown with different weeds. Sure that posed a problem for electric fences, etc., but those overgrown fence rows were the sanctuary of many, many, many creatures...from small lady bugs to deer and smaller wildlife....they produced food and cover for the creatures. For the honey bees the blooming blackberries, mustards, wild plum, tar weeds, butterworts, etc., are just a few of the readily available blooms they had for forage. But, having a 40 acres field surrounds by such a diverse ring of plants helped support all kinds of insects.

Now, the norm is to round up the fence rows leaving a dead, brown streak beneath the strung wire. Over a period of a couple of years all indication of the once nourishing wild flower/bush ring will have disappeared.

People say that the pesticides (herbicides, insecticides, and other poisons) are benign and do no harm to honey bees *if* applied properly. The greatest problem isn't a direct contact with honey bees by the poisons but something more stealthy/insidious. Though the sprays don't outright kill the honey bees (and many other beneficial insects) they do bring minute amounts of it by into the hive. This very low amount of chemicals gets into the honey, the pollen, the wax...basically everywhere in the hive....at low amounts. But, that would be like us drinking a 1/10 of a thimble of Round-Up, or Picloram, or some other chemical with everything that we eat or drink...for the rest of our lives. It won't kill us when we ingest it, but over a period of time the small amount would begin to affect our health. For honey bees, this manifests itself into causing the queen to become less fertile and egg-laying (the life of a hive) to become more sporadic. Drones become less "virile". It weakens the entire population of bees making them more suspect to disease and less able to resist parasites and to be less productive in foraging. And remember, that during the summer the life expectancy of a worker bee is about six weeks....short, eh? That is why the queen's fertility and egg-laying ability is so important....and it takes 21 days from egg being laying for a new bees to emerge from a cell.

No, a lot of the poisons used "correctly" don't "kill" the honey bees....not instantly, anyhow. :(

Sorry to have rattled on... (not really)

Thanks again for the seed link, Frank.
Ed


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Mar 19, 2017 08:33 |  #11

Intheswamp wrote in post #18303294 (external link)
How many managed to make it to flying?

Oh, don't worry about my place...got many acres that is pretty wild. Way too much privet hedge, but the bees and wasps *love* it...but it only lasts a month or two...really only about 3-4 weeks in peek bloom. I planted some vitex negundo a few years ago...dug up some some small 1' plants from a beekeeper friends property. Vitex negundo is supposed to be *the* strain that honey bees go to like metal filings to a magnet. It also will bloom into/through the summer...good hot weather bloom. I believe Texas uses them in the medians of some of their highways/interstates. I planted them probably six years ago...the plants are now 10-12' tall and probably spread 5-6'....they cover about a 20x6 foot area. In all of this time, though, I've never, and I mean *never* seen a honey bee on the plants!!!! Bumble bees, small solitary bees, tiny wasps, big wasps, you name it...but no honey bees. Really strange. I figure these other insects need some good forage too, so I leave them growing.

Ed

Ed, try planting a patch of clover and then make sure you don't mow it until late fall.


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Intheswamp
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Mar 19, 2017 08:51 |  #12

The hayfields around me use to have a small, yellow clover in them that many referred to as "invasive"...the honey bees loved it. But, the fields were sprayed a few years ago with a persistent pesticide and it hurt that clover (and other wildflowers). :( I do have a great abundance of privet hedge around me which makes a very light, white honey. Making good honey is the only redeeming value that I know of for privet hedge.

Honey bees will travel a couple of miles in one direction as they forage on blooming trees, bushes, flowers, etc.,. Closer is better, though. Within that radius they can encounter all kinds of perils....predators, poisons, etc.,. Foraging on plants a far distance from the hive isn't very efficient for them in terms of energy exerted versus gains (nectar/pollen) so closer foraging is much preferred. Worker bees literally will work themselves to death....falling right out of the sky with ragged, tattered wings. They are amazing creatures...there are many things about them that are really mind boggling. :)

Ed


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Mar 19, 2017 09:10 |  #13

When residing in southwest Michigan we lived next to a small orchard that relied on insect pollination. They had several hives placed through out and would dedicate small plots to be untouched that had bee friendly plants. Now that we live in Georgia the Sourwood tree is the favorite choice of beekeepers.


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Mar 19, 2017 10:41 |  #14

PhotosGuy wrote in post #18304676 (external link)
I just got an email that they're out of seeds. They gave away 1.5 Billion of them.

Intheswamp wrote in post #18304902 (external link)
Including everybody from newborns to the centenarians, from the healthy to the comotose, the USA has 319 million people in it. That would be four to five packets per individual at those numbers.

Maybe it was 1.5 billion seeds, not 1.5 billion packets.

Without those free seeds, many plants will help the bees. In our urban yard, lavender is a great favorite of theirs. They also go for some ground covers, including one that blooms in winter when not much else is available.


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Intheswamp
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Mar 19, 2017 16:15 |  #15

OhLook wrote in post #18305034 (external link)
Maybe it was 1.5 billion seeds, not 1.5 billion packets.

Without those free seeds, many plants will help the bees. In our urban yard, lavender is a great favorite of theirs. They also go for some ground covers, including one that blooms in winter when not much else is available.

You are absolutely correct....that was 1.5 billion seeds, not packets. Thanks for the reality check! ;) You know, at just 49-cents a pop for postage, sending out 1.5 billion packets would have cost General Mills a quiet hefty amount!!! They might not have been so "cheery-oh" when they got the bill!!! :-D

Metropolitan areas many times are better than rural areas...in densely populated suburban areas people's backyard gardens add up to a good bit of forage...and most avid gardeners keep blooms going all summer.


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