These two fact sheets are great resources for anyone looking to learn more about pollinators and creating habitat in their backyards.
Bee of the Week -Heriades spp.
Family - Megachilidae
Scientific Name - Heriades spp.
Heriades spp. bees are found throughout most of the world. Only three species are found east of the Rocky Mountains, and another 25 species are found in North and Central America. They are small, black, and commonly have woolly patches of hair on their abdomens, which is how they got their name; 'Heriades' means wool. These bees are generalists, so they visit a wide variety of flowers. They nest in other insects’ holes, especially beetles, but some species are also known to use pine cones as a nest. Heriades spp. are difficult to distinguish from Hoplitis spp. (see last month's newsletter, Bee of The Week). Each genus has microscopic characteristics that differentiate the two.
Spanish Peaks foxglove was introduced to North America in 1999. As the name implies, it’s from Spain originally. It has pink flowers that bloom in early summer and furry leaves. The plant is a perennial that does best in dry, sunny climates. Spanish Peaks foxglove prefers clay, loam, or sandy soils and is deer-resistant. The plant grows to be 12-18 inches tall and 10-12 inches wide. A variety of native bees are frequent visitors. For more information, click here.