Mason bees are excellent pollinators and provide a vital service in the garden, pollinating trees, shrubs, flowers, fruit and veg. They are active from early spring until autumn breeding between late March and August and eagerly take up occupancy of our purpose-built bee tubes.
Our mason bee tubes have been clean drilled to make them ideal habitats for mason and leafcutter bees, along with many other beneficial insects that may use them to shelter and overwinter. The tubes come in a range of widths from 5mm up to 15mm, with the middle sizes between 6mm and 12mm being best for breeding solitary bees.
The tubes can be used on their own or as replacements in an existing mason bee house and by spreading them out in small bunches in different sunny parts of the garden will attract the greater number and diversity of solitary bees.
From March to August mason and leafcutter bees will lay eggs in the tubes and collect pollen to place with each egg in a series of cells from mud or leaf cuttings. The larvae will develop over the winter period in the tubes and will then emerge the following spring, once the weather is warm enough.
Ensure that your own mason bee tubes are well-insulated during the winter otherwise store them in a cool space such as a garage or shed. This will protect them from predators as well as the cold.
Remember to bring them out as soon as the weather warms in March and buy replacement tubes in time for the larvae hatching and the new season.