PHRAGMITES Reed Tubes for Mason Bee pollinators available for 2018 season

NOTE: I do not have Mason Bee Cocoons available for sale in 2018, however I can provide the stems of the native reed Phragmites australis which are considered to be the best tubes for encouraging the native mason bee pollinators. By putting out the tubes alone without releasing  bees, you can in some areas attract the native pollinators anyway. 

I package these in lots of 30 now for $15.00 plus shipping costs. Included are a variety of lengths and diameters if you want. Smaller diameters attract other mason bee species. Indicate the maximum tube length you prefer when ordering. Ordering by Paypal  is acceptable or you may pick them up at our farm in Metchosin on Southern Vancouver island.

Price for 30 tubes=$15..00
GST and PST= $1.75
packaging and shipping= $2.70
Total = $19.35.. use the paypal button below:

 

 

Price for 60 tubes= $30.00
GST and PST = $ 3.50
packaging and shipping= $2.70
Total= $ 36.10…Use the paypal button below:

Basket full of cut Phragmites tubes..
Some successful Phragmites tubes split open in November before cleaning out the cocoons.

 

 

I am short of mason bee cocoons this year,  but even if you can’t get a source for bees this year, you can set out some of these tubes placed in a suitable re-purposed home made from a PVC pipe (or see other homemade suggestions if you scroll down through postings here), and you will probably attract native mason bees.

Ad on Used Victoria:http://www.usedvictoria.com/classified-ad/Phragmites-Tubes-for-raising-Mason-Bee-Cocoons–30-in-packet_24676827

 

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A late Season here for Mason Bees

It has been so cool in the last month here in Metchosin that my mason bees have almost missed the peach and nectarine blooming time.

A peach tree on the left with blossoms deteriorating, and a nectarine on the right at the south side of my barn. Three Mason bee houses are in the centre.

Update–April 15: Today they were the most active i have seen them . I started putting a few cocoons out a week ago, and have warmed up some indoors by just removing their containers  from the fridge and then setting the jar out in the daytime when the sun is on them.  Anyway a very unusual cold start for the spring.

I have several kinds of houses placed on the South East corner of our house.

 

Plants for Pollinators in late May 2016

The mason bees have almost stopped their work of pollination by now.  However several bumblebee species and honey bees were very active around certain plants in the yard this week.

Mason Bees (Blue Orchard Bees) in action

Some images from this month’s activity of mason bees:

masonbeeonflower4
Today I was glad to see them active on my red pear which hasn’t produced well in past years.

 

Put Out Your Mason Bees when Pollinators are Needed

The time to put out your mason bees which have been overwintered in your refrigerator is when you need them to do their work. I release mine in batches.  The first batch was several weeks ago when the peaches and nectarines were in bloom. This week, the pears, plums and cherries are in bloom so I just put out  another batch of cocoons near my bee homes. I will save the last batch for my apple trees which bloom later.

2016-03-31 peachI had to transplant this peach tree this year to the corner of the vegetable preparation building so I found another good spot to place a bee home.

Mason Bee Homes Made by our Customers

I will use this page to mount pictures sent back by customers who have made their own houses out of recycled materials or have set up experiments to test the materials.

 

Mason Bees at Seedy Saturdays/Sundays

Selling mason  bees and reed tubes today proved to be very successful.  I had registered for  a table selling mason bees cocoons  and Phragmites reed-stem tubes at the Victoria Seedy Saturday.

gfandmasonbees
Garry Fletcher selling cocoons and reed tubes at his Mason bee table at Seedy Saturday in Victoria.

My schedule for attending upcoming Seedy Saturdays is as follows, also you can follow the links to their websites for more details.


February 27: Sooke Seedy Saturday
March 6: Nanaimo Seedy Sunday.

March 12: North Vancouver Seedy Saturday
April 2: Surrey Seedy Saturday

I produced the poster below to identify my location at the seedy Saurdays.  A big thankyou to all who were willing to get engaged with raising mason bees and I encourage all those who buy my bees and tubes to give me feedback on their experience with raising them.

So look for the following poster at my table above the Live Mason Bee display box:

Masonbee poster64