Don't Step On A Bee Day

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According to DaysOfTheYear, today (Sunday 10th July) is Don't Step On A Bee Day. People may think that bees are just cute little buzzy insects who happen to like flowers, however their existence is oh so important.

Did you know that plants provide nectar as a thank you to insects like bees? This is because many plants rely on insects like bees in order to be pollinated.

If you'd like to learn more about what bees do for us, there is an amazing article on the BBC website "Would we starve without bees?" The below image is from that article and really highlights just how much we rely on bees.

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The lovely people over at BeeGood wrote a fantastic article for their website for Don't Step On A Bee Day in 2014, giving their Top 5 Bee Care Tips to help to do your bit:
1. Don’t step on a bee! (Of course)
2. Support your local beekeeper! The majority of our honey here in the UK is imported (85%!), but with the wealth of bee keepers on our doorstep there is really no need. Support your local bee keeper by visiting a near-by farm shop or deli and enjoy their precious produce for breakfast on some warm buttered toast - yum!
3. Plant your Bee Good labels! Our little tags that accompany all of your Bee Good product orders are impregnated with special wildflower seeds that bees simply can’t get enough of! Just soak the label for an hour and plant under an inch of soil and watch your wild meadow grow!
4. Download the Great British Bee Count app. This wonderful app created by Friends of the Earth allows you to log the bees you spot out and about. This builds a picture of bee health and activity in the UK to secure a thriving future for our buzzing bees! You can find out more about the app here.
5. Build a bee hotel! Did you know that bees need somewhere to rest when they venture out on their pollen mission? Get the kids involved and get building! You can find a step-by-step guide here.

Now, you may come across a bee that looks dead or dying, but the chances are that it has just landed to take a break. If you do see a bee looking tired, there is a special way you can help. The RSPB advise, "Simply mixing around two tablespoons of white, granulated sugar with one tablespoon of water, and placing the mix in a small container like an egg cup among bees’ favourite flowers, will provide them with energy at this busy time."

Our editor Jenny did this in her garden last summer as a special flower that only flowers every two years (Ragwort) was in full bloom and her garden was a hive of activity! (Sorry, that's our only pun, promise!). She wrote a blog post all about it, including lots of great pictures, you can read more about that here. Below are a couple of the pictures she took last summer :)

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So, the next time you enjoy a slice of toast slathered with honey, think about our little friends in the garden!