I like to plant flowers every year for the bees. I have lots of sweet alyssum, but one of my favorites is the zinnias. Even when I don't deadhead them they will continue to bloom wonderfully. But now the zinnias have no bees around them. I didn't see one there this morning. There are two reasons why.
The first would be this plant. It is a 9' tall Lemon Queen sunflower. I don't plant sunflowers anymore. I did the first year and after that they just come up. This spot is in my rock wall garden along the road. I never even had a sunflower close to this before, but I suspect a squirrel stole a flower from somewhere else and ate it on top of the wall.
Bees love these as much as the birds and the squirrels do. Yesterday when coming home I stopped in front of the driveway watching the goldfinch eat.
The other reason the zinnias have no bees are these yellow mustard flowers. I'm growing them for seed, but you would think I'm growing them for the bees.
The honey bees swarm the plants and one of my favorite things to do is go outside and stand right near them and listen to their buzzing. I know lot of people get freaked out by buzzing bees, but to me it does the opposite.
Now I tried to take photos of the bumblebees, but none of them came out well. So I'll show you a flower that doesn't seem to attract any bees. It is in the morning glory family - a sweet potato flower. Most don't flower for me, but the Garnet always puts out some pretty pink flowers that hide in the foliage. That was something I forgot when I put the a Garnet into my front door planter. I have other orange flowers in there and the colors clash badly. If my potted sweet potato experiment works out I'll have to do a pink or maybe a blue flower in there next year. But not orange.
I'm supposed to cut off the garlic chive flowers as scapes to eat, but I never seem to get around to it in time. And I really don't mind as it attracts a lot of different kinds of wasps. Above is a Great Black Wasp. They get pretty big at maybe an inch and a half (4cm). They have the prettiest iridescent blue wings. They don't often land anywhere. Mostly I see them hovering around the garden but they seem to love these flowers and it is the only place I can get a photo. They feed katydids, grasshoppers, and crickets to their young. And lord knows I have a lot of crickets around for them the feed on. I do love my wasps. Most of them are smaller wasps that eat caterpillars. And who doesn't like fewer caterpillars eating their veggies?