Have you heard of the Bumblebee Conservation Trust?
It was established because of serious concerns about the ‘plight of the bumblebee’. In the last 80 years our bumblebee populations have crashed. Two species have become nationally extinct and several others have declined dramatically. The Trust aims to support the conservation of all bumblebees and to raise awareness and increase understanding about bumblebees and the social, economic, environmental and cultural benefits which they and other pollinators provide.
So what can we do?
We can plant a bumblebee-friendly garden! This means planting a variety of flowers that are rich in pollen and nectar which bees can easily access from spring until late summer. The Bumblebee Conservation Trust’s website has a handy online tool for you to determine how bee-friendly your garden is. Give it a go!
And if you’d like to get more involved, the Trust is always happy to welcome volunteers to help spread the word.
The Trust’s website also includes some lovely recipes using bee-pollinated foods. Here’s one:
375g self raising flour
1 tablespoon caster sugar
250ml milk (may also use lavender infused milk)
2 teaspoons fresh or 1 tsp dried lavender flowers
- Preheat oven to 220 C
- Place the lavender flowers in a blender/food processor/herb grinder for a few seconds to turn them into a course powder.
- Combine the flour, sugar and lavender in a medium size bowl.
- Add the butter, and with your fingertips, combine until the mixture reaches the consistency of fine breadcrumbs.
- Add the milk, and blend the mixture together.
- Turn the mixture out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead gently until it forms a soft dough.
- Flatten dough until it is approximately 2cm thick.
- Using scone cutter (or glass) cut the dough into shapes.
- Lightly dust baking sheet with self raising flour, and place the scone shapes onto the baking sheet, placing them 1 cm apart.
- Lightly brush with milk
- Bake in a preheated oven for 14-16 minutes or until cooked through.
- Place on wire racks to cool.