It was one of those rare, warm summer mornings in London; the kind that you have to spend outside or you feel like you’re missing out. We headed out on our Sunday stroll with Olly, but needed to be back by midday so that Matt could catch a very important football match on TV.
So we rushed through our stroll in the park, but I did so begrudgingly, trying to stall as much as possible; a walk in Wimbledon Common followed by coffee and croissants for takeaway at Gail’s. There was no way we would make it back in time for this game…and when it turned out that I was right, we headed straight out to King’s Cross to take The Bee Trail by The Honey Club, something I’ve been wanting to do all summer!
Honeybees, Buff-tailed bumblebees, Red-tailed bumblebees and Red Mason Solitary bees; you’ll see them all hard at work on the King’s Cross Bee Trail and learn how to help them. We took part in the Citizen Science Project using the KX bee trail app. We followed the trail to each of the seven stops around King’s Cross and identified the bees we saw and entered the number of each in the app.
We took a lot of photos of bees and were pleasantly surprised to see so many along the trail given that bees are in decline. Although many cities and modern farming has wiped out 97% of wildflowers, it was reassuring to learn that London has over eight million trees, providing food for bees and other animals.
A majority of the bees we saw up close were in the Lime trees at Granary Sqaure. The white flowers in the Lime trees provide a source of nectar for urban honeybees, and is one of the recommended ‘bee trees’ to plant in your garden along with Hawthorns and Juneberry.
If you want to do your part and help feed the bees you can plant some of these pollen and nectar-rich flowers from March to September. If you live in the city and are limited for garden space, a window box or hanging basket will do just fine.
You don’t have to keep bees to help support them. You can buy local honey from your market or small producer to get a taste of some of the results.
Thanks to The Honey Club for educating us on our beloved bees and how we can help them. The Honey Club is a social enterprise setup by Global Generation, Wolff Olins and Urban Bees. Their mission is to evolve and expand a network of bee caring communities in urban spaces – from rooftop to garden, hive to street, business to people. Learn more about how you can get involved on their website.