A bee hotel and a stroll through The National Botanic Gardens in summer


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Canberra has quite a few hotels, but this is special…..a timber bee hotel at the National Botanic Gardens, especially made to attract many of the native bees in the area.

(it reminds me of my neighbour’s neat and organised quilting cupboard!)

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To attract a variety of bees the hotel features many different room decors, including hardwood logs and mud bricks drilled with holes, plant stems, fern fronds, and hotel ”rooms” made from cardboard tubes which are packed tight with paper drinking straws, the perfect size for a native bee nest.

The hotel is in a shady spot at the Botanic Gardens, and surrounded by flowers, mostly of the daisy species.


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I arrived early in the morning to see the new bee hotel, but I’m also here to join a group who do a garden stroll through the Botanic Gardens every week. One of the first things we do is look at what is in flower….how about this Banksia Victoriae Proteaceae?

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Near the entrance to the gardens is a bust of Joseph Banks, a British naturalist and botanist, who took part in Captain Cook’s voyage to Australia and New Zealand.

He was fascinated with Australian plants, and the plant genus Banksia is named after him.

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The bust of Joesph Banks is surrounded by Banksias, and therefore we are also surrounded by birds.

A Wattlebird is feeding on the Banksia flowers, in branches just above us…..the food must be tasty! Unfortunately, the one thing the Wattlebird objected to was my camera, so no photo…..sadly.

Considering this is mid summer I am surprised at how much is flowering….

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Corymbia filicifolia
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Pandorea jasminoides
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Rhododendron Viriosum Ericaceae

Here is a Lemon Myrtle tree flowering gloriously in the summer sun… when you crush the leaves there is a wonderful scent of lemon…

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Lemon Myrtle white blossom

It is thought that Aboriginal people have always used the leaves for flavouring in food, and this tradition  continues today. The leaves are used in cooking,  to make tea, and are also added to  soaps and used as herbal remedies.

These gardens are a paradise for birds…this lovely Crimson Rosella is busy preening his long blue tail and wishing I would just go away..

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Crimson Rosella

We are back at the entrance of the National Botanic gardens, what a cool and beautiful spot to spend the morning… I have no doubt that bee hotel will be booked out in no time!

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20 Replies to “A bee hotel and a stroll through The National Botanic Gardens in summer”

  1. The word ‘spectacular’ comes to mind reading through this post and looking at these photos. The crimson rosella is amazing, and that is one first class bee hotel. You are a lucky woman to be able to visit frequently. Thank you very much for sharing this. 🙂

    1. Thanks Judy, I thought the bee house was pretty cute, and I’ve been enjoying strolling around the gardens …always such a peaceful place.

    1. I must do another post on the Banksia, it is amazing and incredibly resistant to fire. Good question about the nectar…so many birds are attracted to Banksia it must have nectar…I’ll look it up!

    1. The tree ferns at the Botanic Gardens are glorious…I love them too…….I’ll do another post on the fern gully at the Botanic gardens.

  2. Totally in love with that bee hive. How creative are some people – REALLY! Sadly – I have no use for wood piles in my neck of the woods. Termite fodder in the tropics.

    1. Yes, I agree about the termites, I like to get rid of extra wood in the garden. The bee hive is really creative, and they have an outdoor classroom for kids to make their own bee hotels…..what a great excursion for kids!

  3. The bee hotel must be new I don’t remember seeing it when I was there, but what a good idea it is. The Canberra Botanic Gardens are very special among the many attractions I loved all the mature trees

    1. The bee hotel has only been there a few weeks, but it is a great idea, and especially for kids. Yes, the Botanic gardens here are really lovely, they are watered from the lake now, which means the mature trees don’t suffer during hot dry spells.

  4. Love the bee hotel! Bees, especially honey bees, are having a tough time now in my part of the U.S. Too much of their habitat is being destroyed. I could imagine building a smaller version of this hotel in our backyard. Thanks for sharing your beautiful photos ~ the gardens are gorgeous!

    1. Thanks Carol, yes the bee hotel is special…I hope it works, I’ll go back and check in a couple of months. Glad you like the gardens, they are especially lovely on a hot summer’s morning.

  5. What a fabulous garden. I love all the straw flowers and the Banksia. And the bust of Joseph Banks, responsible for all those banksii to be found in so many genera.

    1. Yes, the Botanical Gardens are lovely, I’m reminding myself to go there more often instead of the usual walk we do near home.

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