The Phellodendron chinense var. glabriusculum at this station is teaming with bees when in flower during the summer. Another related tree, Tetradium daniellii, is known as ‘The Bee-Bee Tree’. Although these trees come from Asia, it shows that imported species can also be of benefit to our own native pollinators. Trees can also be a source for resin, which is the main ingredient in Propolis. Bees produce this substance and use it as a glue to seal gaps and cracks in their habitat.
Many plants have a unique relationship with one particular pollinator and their life cycles are co-ordinated for the benefit of both parties. Usually it’s a friendly arrangement but one South American climber temporarily traps moths in its flowers, hence it’s called the Cruel Plant! Check it out. We previously grew it here in Fota for some years in the Walled Garden.
Other good pollinating tree are Apples (eating and cooking varieties), Whitethorn and Hawthorn. See pictures below.