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WHAT ARE SOLITARY BEES? Unlike the social honey bees, solitary bees do not have a queen, do not live in a hive and do not produce honey. Without the need to protect a queen and honey, solitary bees are gentle, friendly and non-aggressive. Each female must find or create her own nest, and collect all of the food needed to feed herself and her eggs. Your kids and pets will be safe in the company of solitary bees!

ONE OF NATURE'S BEST POLLINATORS Honey bees collect pollen on their back legs, whereas solitary bees are belly floppers. They flop onto blossoms collecting pollen all over their bodies. This enables them to pollinate 95% of the flowers they land on and they visit over 2,000 flowers a day. They truly are one of nature's best pollinators.

HOW OUR BEES ARE DIFFERENT? Mason bees are one of the easiest bees to host, but you do need to take care of your bees in the fall. If you don’t harvest the cocoons and clean the nesting block you are not protecting your bees from evasive predators such as pollen mites and Houdini flies, which lay their eggs on the mason bee pollen inside your holes. When you rent from us, you don’t have to worry about any of this. You send your nesting block back to us and we do it all for you. During our mason bee harvest we clean millions of mason bee cocoons and sterilize their nesting blocks to eliminate predators. Which means the bees you rent from us are predator free, strong and healthy and your nesting block is clean and ready to start using. In addition to healthy bees, all our bee houses and nesting blocks are made in our wood workshop. We make thousands of bee homes for backyard gardeners to decorate and pollinate your yard. All our nesting blocks are made with holes of a precise size to support laying eggs and keep their babies safe. We also place a cardboard backing on the back of their nesting block to keep out predators and create a dark tunnel for bees to lay their eggs.

OUR BEES ARE CERTIFIED Our bees are certified by the Orchard Bee Association (OBA), which means they are sustainably raised and inspected. When working with mason bees, there are strict guidelines that have been implemented to protect bee populations. We follow the suggested guidelines and ensure that all our bees are separated by region so that when they sent out the following spring, they go back to the region they originated from. We also follow OBA guidelines and best practices for successful shipping of live mason bee cocoons. To reduce risk, we ship only dormant cocoons with adult bees with an ice pack to keep them cool so they are unlikely to emerge in transit.

Gentle. Non-Aggressive. Low Maintenance.

Spring Mason Bees

Blue Orchard Bee, Osmia lignaria (western U.S. only*)

The blue orchard bee is a docile bee native to North America. Adult bees emerge from their cocoons in the spring when fruit trees and many of our native shrubs and herbs are in bloom. These highly efficient pollinators increase fruit production as well as improve the overall health of their ecosystems. This mason bee uses mud to build nest partitions and protect their young from invading pests. They are fun to watch throughout the spring and are an important member of western ecosystems.

(*This bee species is available in the following states: Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming.)

Horn-faced Bee, Osmia cornifrons (midwestern and eastern U.S. only*)

Horn-faced bees are found throughout the midwestern and eastern United States, and are used around the world for fruit tree pollination. Similar to blue orchard bees, adult horn-faced bees are also active during spring when many trees, shrubs, and herbs are in bloom. In addition to mud, this mason bee often also uses leaf pulp to construct their nest partitions. Horn-faced bees are better suited to humid environments than are blue orchard bees, and can also tolerate cold climates.

(*This bee species is available in all U.S. states EXCEPT: Alaska, Alabama, Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Louisiana, Mississippi, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming.)

Summer Leafcutter Bees

Leafcutter Bee, Megachile rotundata (Nationwide*)

Leafcutter bees are found across North America and are used around the world for alfalfa pollination. Honey bees do not efficiently pollinate alfalfa due to a spring-loaded pistil mechanism in the alfalfa flower which they avoid. The small leafcutter bee effectively pollinates by “tripping” the pistil, and is responsible for creating the majority of feed for pigs and dairy cows. They are an equally gentle generalist bee that will visit a majority of types of flowers in your backyard during their flying months of July and August, including your flowering vegetable garden. As their name suggests, leafcutter bees use leaf pieces, which they cut using their mouth-parts, to construct their nests.

(*This bee species is available in all U.S. states EXCEPT: Alaska and Hawaii)

Bee Amazed

Mason bees
visit up to
flowers a day
400 Mason bees
do the work of
honey bees
One Mason bee
block can hold
bees per acre
to pollinate their