Build your own bee- and insects hotel for your garden and greenhouse
Continue reading and you will discover how to make a bee and insect hotel, out of stuff you already have our can find in your garden or nearest natural resort.
It can be a very fun activity to build an insect hotel near your greenhouse. The hotels are a way to attract insects for pollination of your greenhouse plants and to fight of unwanted animals in the greenhouse. Simultaneously, you are providing a place for your insects to seek shelter and ley their eggs. A lot of insects have a hard time finding breeding locations in our neatly and well-trimmed gardens, as there are used to an old tree and brushwood in the forest floor or withered grass and leaves for breeding in nature, as many of us were taught to remove this from our garden.
Guides to different insect hotels
Our guides have been boiled down to two different hotels, where one of them will most likely suit your taste. The first is an insect hotel for little insects that crawls on the ground, like woodlouse. The other is for bees, made out of trimmed logs or different materials found in your garden. In a later blogpost we will teach you how to make a decorative pile of garden waste near your greenhouse.
Guide: The little insect hotel
This guide will primarily help you attract little animals as, spiders, woodlouse, and centipedes, depending on how to build it. If you are lucky, ladybugs and butterflies might use your hotel as shelter as well. The size and form of your insect hotel are all up to your imagination and ambition. You might, for example, use an old wooden drawer for your insect hotel, and you can fill it with old bamboo sticks, cones, moss, leaves, and hay. The most important part is to use materials from nature and avoid pressure impregnated wood.
This you need.
- A wooden box, for example an old wooden drawer or wine box; or build your own box
- Pieces of wood for dividing your box
- For example, sticks, dried leaves, bamboo, spruce cones, straw, hay, wool, or moss.
- String, to tie your materials together
- A leaf or trunk, and a power drill with an 8-10 mm drill
- A brick with holes, potsherd, or shells
- One or two flowerpots in clay
- Chicken wire, a garden scissor, a saw, nails, and a hammer.
How to build
- Use your pieces of wood to divide your wooden box in a number of rooms
- Cut your twigs, straw, or other materials, so they fit in depth
- Saw your branches or logs, so they fit in depth. Then drill holes in your branch to make it look like a swish cheese.
- Fill a flowerpot with wool or moss and put it in one of your rooms. Around the flower pot, fill the space with spruce cones, dried leaves, or shells
- Fasten your chicken wire on the box and place your insect hotel, where it will be exposed to all types of weather. A lot of the insects like staying where it’s a bit moist.
When you are done, place your insect hotel, along your greenhouse, at the corner. Another option is to hang it up in your greenhouse or a tree nearby, but more insects have access if it is placed near the ground.
Guide: A home for hole-liking bees made out of trimmed logs
With this home, you can help bees, who like to stay on holes, with a place they can breed near your favourite greenhouse – and they can help pollinate your greenhouse plants. Bees, who like to stay in holes, lay their eggs in existing passageways and holes. They all start by laying one egg at the end of the passage, afterwards they make a ‘’lunchbox’’, which is made out of pollen and nectar for their offspring, then a wall and another egg and afterwards another ‘’lunchbox’’, and that continues until the hole is filled up. When the larva hatches, they eat the ‘’lunchbox’’, then they transform themselves into a pupa, and then fly out into the world and create a new life. You can make this home for bees made out of trimmed logs, poles, or a stump from a cut down tree in your garden, as seen in the picture below.
This you need:
- Trimmed log/pole sizing a 10 X 10 X 20 cm or longer
- A 0.8-1,2 cm drill for drilling in tress at a 15-20 cm length
- String and screws for hanging your bee home.
How to build
- Drill some holes in one end of your trimmed log. It has to be a minimum of 15-20 cm and must not go all the way through (it is important for a back wall)
- Polish all the entrance holes, so the bees won’t tear, when they fly in and out.
- Hang your bee home at a dry and sunny place, with no wind and minimum 100 cm above the ground and the passages hanging horizontally
The full guide can be found in our book ‘Grow Like Tomorrow’
We hope your new bee and insect hotels will decorate in or around your greenhouse.
Behind the Danish company TagTomat (in English ‘Roof Tomato’) is a skilled team whose passion is to create green communities and inspire to green do-it-yourself and do-it-together projects. Today TagTomat sells organic flower seeds and vegetable seeds, which are packaged with our seed packaging machines from 1895. It all began in 2011 in the heart of the neighbourhood Nørrebro in Copenhagen with just five self-watering plant boxes on a wheelie bin storage. You can read more about TagTomat at our website TagTomat.Get to know TagTomat
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