Whether it is your mom’s garden or yours, all garden lovers have planted petunias. Among flowering annuals, there is none other than petunia that is as popular and loved.
The colorful, vivid petunias bloom to make the environment lively. With that, they also attract insects and pests. But do petunias attract bees?
Do petunias attract bees?
Petunias do attract bees, although not at much as they attract hummingbirds or butterflies. Bees are attracted to petunias due to their bright colors and the sweet smell of nectar. Due to the limited landing area on the petals, bees buzz around petunias but do not stay for too long.
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Naturally, bees look for more nectar and pollen than petunias have to offer. Not just that, bees are always on the lookout for flowers where they can land and rest for some time to collect nectar.
On the other hand, the shape of the petunias is what attracts butterflies and hummingbirds more.
However, when petunias are planted in certain ways, bees are attracted to them more often. For instance, if there are several bright colors planted together, the chances of petunias being lured to the flowers are much more.
When there are more colors in the petunia garden, the bees see light and dark spectrum in their ultraviolet vision.
Another time bees would be attracted to come near petunias is when there is a range of different-sized petunias. When there are different landing areas, bees are more likely to choose to land where they feel comfortable.
Open faced petunias also lure in bees. Petunias that are planted in pots can have variable heights to help attract bees as well.
In addition to that, a nearby water source always makes bees more interested in petunias. Some people even plant another plant with the petunias to make sure bees come around even when the petunias are out of bloom.
Bees are attracted to flowers, not because of their looks, but because they are looking for food. They take in the pollen and nectar to make their diets complete. Bees are attracted to certain flowers more than others.
Do honey bees like petunias?
For honey bees, petunias do not provide them with enough hector or pollen. Despite having nectar, petunias do not produce large amounts of it.
However, the nectar produced by petunias is sweet and the fragrance can attract honeybees. Although honey bees could be lured by the looks and fragrance of petunias, they leave in a short time due to the lack of nectar as well as landing space.
Honeybees are rather attracted to flowers like Bee balm, wild indigo, or even daisies and sunflowers. These flowers have a shape that attracts the honeybees and can produce enough nectar for honeybees to be satisfied.
Do Mexican petunias attract bees?
Mexican petunias do attract bees because they produce huge amounts of nectar and a big bloom that lasts from June through November. Due to the fragrance and abundance of nectar, bees often visit Mexican petunias.
During the warm months, Mexican petunias are known to have a succulent and persistent nectar supply.
However, the problem with Mexican petunias is that bees have a hard time gathering food from this plant. To look for pollen, bees need to climb and go deeper till they can reach the nectar.
This is one reason why despite having great bloom and pollen, bees might avoid doing all the hard work.
Do petunias draw pollinators?
Petunias do draw pollinators but to a limited scale. Due to little nectar and pollen content, bees are often drawn by the looks and scent but cannot stay longer.
However, when different sized petunias are planted coupled with flowers that have succulent amounts of nectar, bees will visit both the plants.
Do petunias attract bugs and wasps?
Petunias do attract bugs, wasps, and all kinds of garden pests. However, petunias are mainly eye candy for crawly pests such as caterpillars and slugs.
Caterpillars and crawly insects are hard to identify and the only way to get rid of them is by handpicking them and throwing them out.
As for bugs, mites are perhaps most known to be living around petunias. Mites hide inside closed buds and open flowers. They damage petunias by leaving a trail of mite saliva that is toxic and causes damaged foliage very easily.
Black and yellow leaf miners are other kinds of bugs that are attracted by petunias. These pests harm petunias by puncturing the leaves as they feed on the flowers.
It is important to take the right steps to drive away bugs and wasps so that they cannot harm petunias foliage and bloom
What do petunias attract?
Petunias are a vivid looking flowering plant that attracts several birds, insects, and sometimes animals. There is a good reason why each is attracted to petunia.
Additionally, there are ways to plant and care for petunia in certain ways that would attract friendly wildlife:
Petunias are one of the annuals that hummingbirds love, and are hence attracted very strongly. The shape of the petunia plant is the main reason why hummingbirds love petunias so much.
Other than that, the mild but sweet smell also works like a magnet. Other than that, the bright colors and nectar taste bring hummingbirds home.
Petunias that are grown from seeds during winter, attract a lot of hummingbirds by summer.
Pollinating insects like butterflies are strongly attracted to petunias as the flowers produce one of the sweetest nectars with over 20% sugar content.
The shape of the bloom in petunias is like a trumpet, which works wonders to get butterflies on board.
Petunias attract bees due to their appearance and fragrance. The loud colors and strong fragrance invite bees that come to collect nectar.
When several sizes and colors of petunias are planted together, the more chances of bees getting attracted.
Slugs and Caterpillar:
Slugs and caterpillars, and other crawly insects are mostly attracted to petunias. Their arrival can be spotted by tiny black droppings on the plant.
Slugs and caterpillars mostly feed on the buds and petals, but they would also chew through the foliage.
Caterpillars and slugs mainly come to petunias during the summer time and must be handpicked for removal.
Mites and flies:
Serpentine leaf miners are one of the most common types of flies that are attracted to petunias. These flies will eat and make holes in the foliage, causing sap to leak through.
Other than that, petunias also attract mites and several species of it, with cyclamen mites being the most common.
Since these mites leave toxic saliva on the plant, petunias are greatly damaged if mites get attracted.
What flowers attract bees the most?
Here are a few flowers they are most attracted to:
Aromatic and filled with flowers, bee balms is one flower that bees are fixated with.
These bloom for about 7 to 8 weeks during springtime.
Whether it is the bumblebee or honeybee, lavender is one flower that bees cannot get enough of.
From gross bleu to grosso, the variety of lavender flowers is all loved by bees equally.
Bees are ever so attracted to the fragrance as well as the vivid color of lilac flowers.
From spring through summer, bees will visit lilac flowers for nectar and pollen.
Blue borage is a herb plant that produces flowers and leaves that can be eaten.
The flowers are also known as starflowers and are one of the favorites for bees to feast on.
Foxgloves are an interesting kind of flower that become glowy and fluorescent at night. Since bees see ultraviolet light, they land on these flowers directly.
These last spring to summer bloomers are easy bait for bees since their fragrance, shape, and food source all allure bees and birds.
Black eyed Susan:
These flowers look much like sunflowers and produce a lot of sweet nectar that attracts bees in large numbers.
This tolerant and tall plant produces white flowers that lure in bees during its full bloom season, which is usually spring.
Chives are a common plant in our gardens since they are so easy to take care of.
When these chives produce flowers, they become a resting place for bees.
Bee bush or Abelia produces beautiful white flowers that are loved by honeybees as well as bumblebees. The flowers bloom from spring to fall.
Bees are known to buzz around petunias all the time, particularly when there are several different sizes, types, and colors of petunias planted in the same area. Although the nectar produced by petunias is not so strong, bees do visit the flowers to collect nectar.