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Bees Please – Mason Bee Castle

‘Bees Please’ box is in harmony with its surroundings in Vancouver BC

By Chloe Bennett Design
May 2011

From her blog:

Life has been busy since the last post. This April, we finally installed the ‘Bees Please’ Mason Bee Box in the roundabout at Yew & 6th in Kitsilano. The design process was fast and furious, as we raced to meet Mother Nature’s deadline (mason bees emerge from their cocoons late March / April). Thanks to Doug Patterson, Landscape Architecture professor at UBC, for his support and guidance.

Michael and I bought the materials, and built the structure from scratch. I’m glad that I wasn’t aware of how much work this would be, because had I known, I probably would have chickened out, considering the pressure we were both under at school, etc. However, I have learned sooooo much from this experience. A huge thank-you to Michael, who is simply wonderful for helping as much as he did.

The ‘Bees Please’ box is in harmony with its surroundings, under the city’s height restrictions, and most exciting of all, the bees have stayed!!!!!

See Chloe’s blog here.

1 comment

1 Dave Hunter { 05.30.11 at 7:02 am }


I’m impressed and pleased to see this type of awareness to native pollinators. Especially within the urban environment! Cars don’t go that fast around here to harm the bees any. Plus, as you bring up, there is a lot of pollen within a 100 meter radius for the bees to forage on.

A small word of caution though… If I gave you an aquarium with fish but didn’t tell you to change the water, how long would your fish last? This is true with our gentle solitary pollinators as well. With drilled blocks of wood or bamboo, you’re unable to observe and harvest the cocoons in the fall. As a result, pests will quickly move in and within 2-3 years, begin “shutting down” the filled holes. Many gardeners don’t realize that their holes never open up.

The best solution is the straws that you purchased. These should be opened up in the fall. It’s rather fun if the straws open easily. (the are are other concepts available as well; trays that open, reeds)

I hope that many people watch this video are are equally enthused to begin raising mason bees as well. In the near future, their excess bees will be needed in our commercial orchards. Our company is trying to help each backyard gardener be successful. (see our bee-mail program.)

thank you,