While several agencies research why the honey bees have been in dramatic decline over the years, we can become pro-active to do our part in increasing their colonies. According to the EcoHealth Alliance, the top three factors in honey bee colony declines are due to The Varroa Mite, pathogens, and pesticides. Agri-View encourages farmers to step up in nurturing native bees on their farms. Even if you have very little space for a garden, you can still do your part (and encourage others also) by creating a banquet for bees to thrive in (and encourage your friends to do the same). In addition to your own garden (even if it’s in pots in a small patio), you can avoid using chemical pesticides that can harm or deter bees from feasting. We can preserve honey bees and control pests, naturally.
We don’t have to spend so much time worrying about what not to do if we remain proactive.
My garden, though small due to limited space, is my sanctuary for spiritual growth. I hear from that divine spark within while tending my garden and observing all of nature’s creatures that party there. I have a fountain to create nature sounds to soothe my soul. My garden is important to the life cycle of this planet as well as for my spirit.
1. Plant bee attracting flowers, herbs, and other flowering plants that are native to your area. You can talk to your local nursery staff to find out what’s best for your neighborhood.
2. Plant wildflower seeds in your yard.
3. Plant native, drought resistant flowers in an empty field near your home.
4. Volunteer at a neighborhood garden.
5. Plant a variety of colorful flowers, especially blue, white, and yellow.
6. Allow for wild space so dandelions, milkweed, and other wild weeds can grow and flower in it’s full life cycle. You can use a patch of ground behind your garage away from your flower garden. They also attract butterflies!
7. Keep a bird bath regularly supplied with water. I have a few small insect water baths in my flower beds for them.
8. For weed control in your flower beds, use tools for removing them from their root systems. Transplant them to your wild space.
9. For pest control, invite pest predators to the garden party.
For aphids: You can purchase live ladybugs at a local nursery. If you have rose bushes that are attracting aphids, you can place the ladybug container under them (at night) and cover the bushes with a sheet. Place a bowl of water near them, because they’re thirsty too. In the morning, the ladybugs will fly up and find their feast under the leaves and stay there.
For Snails: Local nurseries sometimes sell carnivore snails that will devour your plant eating snails.
For caterpillars and other plant eating worms: Purchase preying mantis for your garden.
Spiders: Allow garden spiders to remain in your yard. Respect their place in the life cycle of your yard, they eat mosquitoes, flies, and all sorts of other pests.
By allowing natural insect predators in your yard you can AVOID using chemical pest control substances.
Now lets talk about ants. They come in when it rains and when it’s hot and when it’s dry. These pests can quickly bring in an entire army for one drop of sweet food such as cereal, bread crumbs, etc. All the tiny things our children drop from their finger tips and mouths as they devour your scrumptious meals. Keep the counters and floors clean!
Now here’s a list of natural repellents to keep intrusive insects at bay.
Many insects rely on the receptors in their feet to ‘smell’ and if those receptors are disrupted they can’t find their way around. The butterfly pavilion at the Natural History Museum in Los Angeles uses mineral oil above the butterfly feeders to keep ants out of the maple infused water feeders. Ants are thirsty too and applying some mineral oil to the bar that hangs your bee and butterfly water feeders can help.
You can use essential oils for pest control too. However, it needs to be reapplied often because it will not hold it’s power for long once it’s exposed to the air and sunlight.
Spray: I would create a spray of mineral oil and a chosen essential oil for the following pests:
Ants : peppermint
Mosquitoes : lemongrass and lavender
Roaches : eucalyptus
Spiders : peppermint
Ticks : lavender, lemongrass, and thyme
General pest control spray: Mix doTERRA’s TerraShield essential oil blend with filtered water (shake well before each use) and spray baseboards and door thresholds twice a week.
For these pests in your home, mix chosen essential oils accordingly.
Fleas (in carpet) : lavender, lemongrass, and peppermint (sprinkle carpet and let sit for 15 minutes then vacuum well). Flea eggs don’t stick to the host, they can fall off into the carpet.
Fleas ON PETS : mix lavender with Johnson & Johnson’s baby shampoo. Lather up and let sit on pets for 10 minutes then rinse well. This shampoo kills fleas, but not eggs, so shampoo every week and vacuum 2-3 times a week. Read about the flea life cycle here.
In Kennels: Clean kennels and bedding with Dr. Bonner’s unscented liquid castile soap and add lavender, melaleuca, and lemongrass.
If you’d like to learn more about doTERRA essential oils and various other products, read here.
You can help do your part by sharing valuable information like this and help build a momentum of nature preservation in compassionate people who care about our earth and all it’s inhabitants. Please use the sharing buttons below to spread the word to all your social networks. The honey bees will thank you!
*Disclaimer: As an Wellness Advocate I provide my personal opinion and experiences with essential oils, and am not endorsed by dōTERRA Corporate. None of what I testify of has been evaluated by the FDA, nor is it intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. I am not a registered medical professional and I encourage you to discuss your health concerns with your own doctor. I simply share resources and tools to raise consumer awareness. This post may contain affiliate links. Read my full disclaimer here.
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