Thursday, August 5, 2010

Bees, please!

Last spring, a sunflower-seed-craving bear took a swipe at our backyard bird feeder.  To cover up the pole, I decided that runner beans would be a good solution.  Normally, I would have planted Scarlet Runner seeds but, by the time I got to the store they were all out of that variety.  I bought a cousin named Painted Lady.  The store helper assured me that the beans were very similar.

Now, she's blooming.  Isn't she pretty?  But, all along the blossom stems where I expected to see little beans forming, are nothing but stems from the old flowers as they drop off.  What is happening?  A bad seed batch?

Aha!  Maybe this is the answer.  Around the front, the globe thistles have captured the bees attention.  The heads are covered with bees foraging for what must be some pretty wonderful nectar.  Of course, when I went to get the camera, they refused to perform.  Here is one busy fellow... but they were just one to a blossom and I couldn't herd them together.

Later in the afternoon, I went back to the beans.    I spied a little bean.  And another.  And yet another.  

Thank you, bees.  We may have a crop after all.


Rudee said...

You have an amazing green thumb, and now I see your helpers!

Andrea said...

Same thing was happening to my scarlet runners - blossoms were falling off, but not leaving beans. But the bees seem to have finally found them and I too have baby beans!

Ginny said...

What a beautiful bean plant flower. And great bee photos!! We had a lovely stand of globe thistle a few blocks away loaded with bees, and I just took several pics of it to post.

Mama Zen said...

I had a total crop failure. Maybe, it was lack of bees!

Mimi said...

I do hope you have lift-off as regards the crop, but if not, at least you had nice flowers.
Love that last photo of th ebee hard at work.

Joanna said...

The painted lady bean blooms are so pretty. I think I'll look for those next year. Although I've noticed the hummingbirds like my scarlet runner blooms. With them around, perhaps we don't need the bees. Glad yours are coming around.

April said...

Lovely runner bean flowers - so nice to see the bees. I might try growing those next year, too and will make a note of the variety.


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