In the wake of the corona pandemic, insect-friendly plants have become more popular than ever. “In particular, the demand for indigenous perennials, ideally suited as pastures for bees and insects, is increasing massively", says Stefan Runke, Key Account Manager at Landgard Fachhandel GmbH. "In the first quarter of 2021 alone, our sales of bee-friendly flowers and plants under the 'Maja Biene®' license increased by more than 150 percent compared to the same period of the previous year. Depending on the customer, the order volume for bee-friendly perennials has even quadrupled compared to the previous year."
As early as the end of March, the producers' cooperative gave the starting signal for the bee year 2021 in the cash and carry markets and with DIY customers with “Die Biene Maja” – spring shrubs such as Aubrieta, Phlox, Primula veris, or Saxifraga and an insect hotel. Since the end of April, the season for insect-friendly plants in the garden and balcony, with large perennials such as Campanula, Delphinium, Dianthus, Digitalis, Gaura, Lavendula, Salvia, or Scambiosa are increasingly gaining momentum.
Late start and high demand from producers
"Due to the cold April and May, we are three weeks later than usual. Currently, however, the demand is so high that our bee-friendly plants are gone before they even bloom," confirms Tristan Heinen-Bizjak, Operations Manager at Horticultural company Schmitz. “Depending on the variety, this extends our time window for marketing. And consumers at home can look forward to great flowers that attract bees and other insects all the longer.” On an area of 4.5 hectares, divided over two locations in Kerken in the Lower Rhine, they produce a wide range of perennials and plants that provide insects with a rich supply of food.
Bee protection – personable and recognizable at first glance
In order to give consumers even easier orientation when it comes to bee protection, Landgard has been grouping bee and insect-friendly flowering plants under the license of the well-known TV character "Maya the Bee" for several years. "The flowers and plants marketed here can be recognized by consumers as bee food at first glance. The richly blooming "Maya the Bee" plants and shrubs not only provide additional sources of food for a large number of domestic insects. Due to the uncompromising compliance with all legal regulations in terms of bee protection and the waiver of substances that are harmful to bees, the licensing cooperation also guarantees safety for Maya the honeybee and her relatives. And with their design in the look of the popular TV bee, “Die Biene Maja” products also bring a good dose of good mood and are ideally suited as highlights at the POS. Thanks to the wide range of bee-friendly flowering plants, which are available in different pot sizes, every plant fan is guaranteed to find the optimal Maya bee mix for their garden in specialist shops."
Varieties that insects like
The spectrum of flowers and plants with which gardening enthusiasts can make an important contribution to the protection of endangered insects is wide. Because here, too, biodiversity means above all diversity in flora and fauna. Numerous different flowers and thus pollen and nectar offerings in the garden, on the terrace, and on the balcony specifically encourage the multitude of insects. According to Landgard, popular ones right now are Plant classics such as Lavandula or Dianthus offer bees, bumblebees, and more plenty of pollen and nectar. "Ground cover such as phlox, creeping thyme, Sedum, Waldsteinia, or Veronica also fill the lowest level in the bedding attractively and provide insects with valuable sources of food. Combined with other insect-friendly flowers and plants such as Helleborus, herbs or wild shrubs transform the garden into a veritable insect paradise until late autumn. After all, even these small animals can have very different tastes. While some species tend to be “monogamous” when it comes to eating and are limited to one type of flower, others are not picky and are therefore true flower omnivores. Whether the menu is one-sided or variety is required, insects agree on some points: The flowers should have a rich supply of pollen and nectar and not or only partially filled so that the food is easily accessible."
For more information:
Landgard Service GmbH