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To bee..?, the royal football field

Discover Sofiero’s contribution to the Swedish parks’ bee appeal: Buzzing Gardens. A conceptual garden filled with facts about how we can best take care of our endangered bees. By Sofiero’s garden designer Sara Bratt.

To Bee or not to bee… What’s life like for our bees?
It is common knowledge that bees are having a rough time. Alarming reports describe how their numbers are decreasing not just in Sweden but globally too. There are many reasons for this. Agricultural chemicals play a part but the primary cause is actually a lack of flowers. Flowers in the right places and blooming at the right times are a condition for the survival of these pollinating insects. Modern agriculture, with enormous fields and little crop variation, together with effective weed control, means that there is much less diversity of flower varieties. The distance between flowers has also increased considerably in many areas, making it much more difficult for bees to survive.

Pollination is vital
Not everyone thinks about how important our pollinating insects are for human survival. In 2011, the Board of Agriculture estimated the economic value for Swedish farming of honey bees’ pollinating services to a sum of between 260 and 466 million kronor! Yes, it’s fantastic that bees work so hard for us – but what would we do without them? Where would our food come from? Production of most of what we eat depends in fact on pollination.

Gardens make a difference
These negative reports can be quite alarming but it is encouraging to know that we can in fact all do quite a lot to help our little pollinators! Much research has been done on this subject in recent years and it apparent that our own gardens are of huge importance for bees. Gardens might even now be some of the absolutely most important locations for pollinating insects. One survey carried out in England showed that honey bees build nests in gardens to a greater extent than in favourable conditions in the wild. An inventory performed in the south of Sweden shows that the nearer a garden you come, the greater the number and species variety of bees. So it’s not really so strange that we who love gardens and love flowers have about the same needs as bees. Bees need access to flowers from early spring until late autumn, and the greater the variety the better. Water is also important for them. And that’s exactly what many of us want in our gardens. And if your garden is a bit untidy the bees will be even happier! In other words, if you have a garden in bloom you are doing the bees a service. If you don’t have a garden of your own, you can support parks and gardens by visiting them. But of course there is much, much more you can do for bees and other pollinators.

Be inspired
The association Svenska Bin and the park and garden network Swedish Gardens has this year put out a mutual appeal called Buzzing Parks and Gardens in order to increase awareness of the vital subject of pollination. Sofiero’s contribution, To Bee…, is an installation that we hope will give bees the attention they need but also inspire you to transform your own garden or balcony into a bee paradise. You can actually make a difference! Apart from the bees having access to water, and the hummocks providing shelter from the wind, this garden holds a real smorgasbord of some of bees’ favourite flowers. For instance, we’ve indulged in lots of varieties of beautiful cornflowers (Centaurea). It’s lucky that bees have such good taste when it comes to plants! This is a place where you can follow seasonal changes and relax as you listen to the gentle buzzing, but keep an eye on our website and social media throughout the season for information about activities related to bees and beekeeping.

  • 13 Apr 2019 - 22 Sep 2019
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Address: Sofierovägen 131
Zip code: 251 89 Helsingborg
Phone: +46 42-10 25 00
E-mail: sofiero@helsingborg.ses

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Sofiero Palace and Park - a part of Helsingborg City.