a french garden

Reflections on nature in a garden in France

A Megachile emerges


I have re-blogged this post. It is perhaps a bit too hard-core bee for A French Garden but some people may be interested in an update on the bee hotels I have in the garden.

Bees in a French Garden

1-Rose meg 4.9.13 19-57 (2)

On the fourth of September last year I noticed a hole in my bee hotel had been beautifully sealed by carefully arranged sections of rose petals. (See Some Megachile).

1-1 Rose petal hole_0527

On the 24 of May this year I noticed a hole had been chewed in the centre of it.

1-2 24.5.14 1920_0532

I could not resist removing the remains of the rose petals to get a better look.  A new little bee was making her way into the world.  However, it was 19.20 and domestic duties called and the light was fading for photographs.

1-3 Rose hole 25.5.14 11.04_0536

It was 11.04 the next morning before I was able to get back to my bee and she seemed just to be waking up.


Seven minutes later and she was not  making an enormous progress.


Then two minutes later there is movement from the hole above her.

1-8 other further out 11.26_0568

Now which one should I focus on?  The other one is larger…

View original post 315 more words

Author: afrenchgarden

Born in Scotland I have lived in England, Iran, USA and Greece. The house and land was bought twelve years ago in fulfilment of the dream of living in France that my Francophile husband nurtured. We had spent frequent holidays in France touring the more northerly parts and enjoying the food, scenery, architecture and of course gardens. However, we felt that to retire in France and enjoy a more clement climate than we currently had in Aberdeen we would need to find somewhere south of the river Loire but not too south to make returning to visit the UK onerous. The year 2000 saw us buying our house and setting it up to receive us and the family on holidays. The garden was more a field and we were helped by my son to remove the fencing that had separated the previous owners’ goats, sheep and chickens. We did inherit some lovely old trees and decided to plant more fruit trees that would survive and mature with the minimum of care until we took up permanent residence. The move took place in 2006 and the love hate relation with the “garden” started. There was so much to do in the house that there was little energy left for the hard tasks in the garden. It was very much a slow process and a steep learning curve. Expenditures have been kept to a minimum. The majority of the plants have been cuttings and I try to gather seeds wherever I can. The fruit trees have all been bought but we have tender hearts and cannot resist the little unloved shrub at a discount price and take it as a matter of honour to nurse it back to health. This year I have launched my Blog hoping to reach out to other gardeners in other countries. My aim is to make a garden for people to enjoy, providing shady and sunny spots with plants that enjoy living in this area with its limestone based subsoil and low rainfall in a warm summer. Exchanging ideas and exploring mutual problems will enrich my experience trying to form my French garden.

9 thoughts on “A Megachile emerges

  1. Interesting. I’m all for bees thriving, no matter where they are.


    • I have purposefully chosen flowers that support the different kinds of bees throughout the year to put in the garden and it is remarkable how many more I see in the garden year on year. Amelia


  2. A delightful update.


  3. Not too hardcore at all Amelia! That’s a really lovely post actually – the whole emergence thing made all the more beautiful by the rose petal decor! 😉


  4. When I commented on the original post….
    I hadn’t noticed that rather marvelous HUMAN face on the upper bee….
    [in the penultimate picture on this version…]


  5. Not too hard core, marvellous! Almost like a time-lapse emergence, amazing! Thanks for reposting 🙂


    • Thank you. So many people don’t know or care about the wild bees. I was talking to some French people yesterday who were very concerned about the pesticides being used here and their effect on bees, I added that the herbicides that are used in the vineyards must have an effect on the wild bees that nest in the soil (they love the bare earth to nest in) and they were quite surprised, they did not know about any other bees but honey bees. i.e. there are honey bees (good) and also wasps, hornets and flies (bad). Amelia


      • So many people I know mistake honeybees for wasps or think we keep bumbles. Much bee education to be had! But a beginner saw a honeybee start to emerge from her cell this week and was awed. That’s the lovely bit of showing people bees!


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