But no more bitty blue flowers on the bottlebrush blooms. As I mentioned before I'm seeing fewer bees now. Those that remain are now visiting plants that previously only the hummingbird used to visit.
Take the crab bed, for instance. There are bees on the salvia splendens and the 2 tubular hyssops (Apricot Sprite & Apache Sunset). The s. spendens have the largest flower and even native bees can shove their little selves in for a sip. As for the hyssops, they are really small and it's fun to watch larger bees push themselves in. Some types just slice in from the outside.
In the morning the s. spendens in the arbor garden are all a-buzz, as are the red lobelia. In the background you can see lots of geraniums in the veg bed, and they are getting some honeybee traffic. I've grown geraniums here for years and to date they have only been eye-candy for the gardener. I'm not sure why this year is different. More bees? More flowers? Last year I had less bee forage so wouldn't the geraniums been more attractive since there was less to be had? I don't know the answer. I'm just glad they are enjoying them now.
As for other tiny tubular flowers, the same can be said for the salvia subrotunda. This plant is 98% foliage and 2% flower. Teeny tiny flowers. But now, without the agastache, the bees are chewing into them like candy.
Even the marigolds (which, like my geraniums never got any traffic in past years) are enjoying daily visits from natives and honeybees alike.
The agastache attracted a ton of bees this year: natives and honeybees. It's unfortunate that the plants did not bloom longer. (Yeah, I'm really disappointed (ha!)that they only lasted 3 months in spite of the extreme heat and drought! LOL)
Well, while I (like the bees) am missing the main course forage, I'm glad that the 2nd string blooms are getting their fair share of attention. After all, it's hard for me to justify indulging in too many plants that are just pretty faces since starting the sanctuary. It's good to know that some of my fave eye candy are making the cut!