If you want to invite pollinators into your garden and involve the family at the same time, a DIY bee or bug hotel is the perfect way to do it.
This is the perfect opportunity to explain the importance of wildlife in nature and they benefit the plants in your garden too. Small kids will enjoy collecting objects to fit inside the bee hotel, and you can even paint and decorate the entire structure before hanging it.
Here’s how you can do it:
You will need:
✣ 4 or 5 pieces of untreated wood planks (depending on chosen shape)
✣ 10 screws or nails
✣ Wire mesh
✣ Staple gun
✣ Small bamboo sticks
✣ Scrap wood pieces
✣ Garden scraps
✣ Measure out the desired size of your bee hotel and cut planks to size. Use 4 pieces for a simple square shape or 5 for the classic hotel shape.
✣ Screw or nail the pieces together at the joints.
✣ Cut a piece of wire mesh to size and staple it to the back of the hotel.
✣ Pack bamboo sticks horizontally into the structure. Add pieces of scrap wood with small holes drilled in them and garden scraps into any gaps. Pack tightly to stop anything from falling out.
✣ If any garden scraps don’t hold (such as pinecones), use more wire mesh in front to keep them in place.
✣ Hang the bee hotel in a bright area facing the sunlight to improve warmth over the cooler months.
Feature image: Unsplash
Originally published in SA Woman&Home Magazine.