Video: Orchard mason bees + the straw bale garden

The orchard mason bees are going gangbusters! Listen to Lily explain the orchard mason bee life cycle, and then head over to Wikipedia to get the real scoop.  In any case, I’m really happy to see them out and about and happily laying eggs in the tubes.

Straw bale garden

Straw bale garden

I’ve been working on filling in an uneven area south of the orchard for a future raised bed area. Aimee, a friend from school, suggested that I look into creating a straw bale garden.  As you can see, I’m giving it a shot.  I’m planning to grow squash out of the bales and then, as the straw breaks down, it will help fill in the uneven area. I’ll post progress reports on this experiment throughout the season. So far I’ll I’ve done is wet down the bales.

Merveille Quartre lettuce

Merveille Quartre lettuce

I’ll end today with this picture of Merveille Quartre lettuce. Very tasty!


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6 Responses to Video: Orchard mason bees + the straw bale garden

  1. Awesome! I saw ours hatch 2 days ago too, I caught on with my camera since I had just opened up the hive to check. I know I shouldn’t have but I was impatient.

    Do you know if you are supposed to remove their casings to make room for the new eggs? Are they already laying eggs when they just hatched? I’ll follow your link to wiki and read up, I know nothing about them yet!

    I love your straw bale gardening idea too – great way to eventually fill in that spot.

  2. Oh crum! I put the eggs into the tubes in my bee house. Was I not supposed to do that? I wonder if it means they won’t lay in the holes since there already are eggs in there. Maybe I should take the ones out that haven’t hatched yet and make a toilet paper roll thing to put on top like you have. Derp!

  3. Hi Annette,

    I actually don’t know a whole lot about orchard mason bees. This is my first year with them. I am partnering with Steve the bee guy. He set the bee house up for me and has been providing instruction on what to do. The eggs should go in a larger tube (the one above the individual paper tubes) and then they lay the fresh eggs in the paper tubes. If your bees are already out, I don’t think I would try to remove the eggs and it might disturb any new eggs. They’ve probably hatched already anyway.

  4. kitsapFG says:

    Lily’s narration was just charming! I was smiling the whole time I was listening to it. 😀

    The strawbale garden is a great idea and will be interesting to follow as you proceed forward with it.

  5. Pingback: Straw bale and other plantings | The 10 Year Challenge

  6. Pingback: Bees, basil, lemons, and eggs | The 10 Year Challenge

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