I left the greenhouse door open for a few hours today, letting out the dank winter air and allowing the sweet spring air in. Late in the afternoon I checked that no one was catching a chill and I found it buzzing. The bees had arrived – big, small, bumble and solitary, perhaps drawn in by the heady scent of the hyacinths. I think they were disappointed once they were in there and they all seemed to be trying to escape, unfortunately through the glass ceiling. They would have been much better off outside feasting on the heather, crocus and daffodils, returning later when the peach and nectarine are flowering and we need some serious pollinating action. I feel like a wicked temptress.
This Prunus cerasifera or the Cherry Plum would also be an ideal snacking zone for a bee breakfast. It is also known as Myrobalan Plum and has small red plum like fruit. It was traditionally used as a hedging plant for orchards – what a great invention, an edible hedge. They have fallen out of favour as a produce tree which is puzzling as they are good eaten fresh off the tree when ripe but also stewed, made into jam or even wine. What is more the birds seem to largely ignore the fruit so we don’t have to share. The beautifully simple cup-shaped flowers are so delicate and to be honest stamen don’t get much better than these!