Thursday, May 29, 2008

Ceanothus and Honeybees

I'd been thinking about doing a post about Ceanothus in Seattle.

I would have included these two May 4 photos of the Ceanothus drift near University Village (which I posted before).



I probably would not have included this other shot of them with waning blooms on May 23.


I definitely would have included this May 22 shot of a Ceanothus a block from my friend Kim's new place on Capitol Hill.


And this closeup of it as well.


I would have tried to get better shots (with the good camera instead of the point-and-shoot) of my own Ceanothus plants around their peak (but really just starting to wane) on May 23.



But I decided not to because I felt that I did not take photos of many of the best Ceanothus plants this year. The ones you see when you're driving by and you take your eyes off the road too long and almost cause an accident.

Also, I never got any good shots of the incredible number of honeybees that swarm Ceanothus bushes, especially the ones in my backyard. A friend from Portland remarked on it this weekend. She said she had never seen so many honeybees in Portland. I told her that's why I couldn't do any weeding around them in May -- it would be like sticking my hand into a hive.

It didn't occur to me until tonight that they might actually live in the yard. Until a neighbor knocked on our door, very concerned about the bee swarm situation in the back of our yard. She wasn't sure if they were bees, wasps, yellow jackets, or what, but that they were scaring people and making a big racket.

So we went down there to investigate. What kind of insect makes a brown, bumpy-looking nest?


Oh, that's not a nest. That's a mass of honeybees crawling all over each other.



I feel honored that they chose a home in our yard. But I don't want to freak the neighbors out. And if they established a hive there, it would be much more intrusive to them than to us.

So we're going to see if Jerry the Bee Guy can come down and find a good home for them.

Bye-bye, bees!


chuck b. said...

How awesome to have a poison-free stinging insect removal dude in and around Seattle. Awesome!

As I recall, you have Ceanothus 'Julia Phelps', no? They've gotten big. Did you plant them out from 1-gallon pots? If so, they're doing very well.

Dan The Bee Man said...

As an alternative, you can now also call Dan The Bee Man for your Poison-Free Stinging Insect Removal needs. Friendly competition is good for the consumer :-)