Explore Plants

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 

Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.

rate this answer
Not Yet Rated

Friday - February 18, 2011

From: Athens, GA
Region: Southeast
Topic: Wildlife Gardens
Title: Plants for bees in GA
Answered by: Anne Bossart

QUESTION:

Hi, I'm in Georgia and I am starting beekeeping this spring and I am also hoping to plant a mostly evergreen hedge around my yard to add privacy from neighbors. There are already some well established pine and other trees so the hedge is part to semi shade, to full shade in some places. I would like to plant mostly evergreens, but some deciduous, shrub type plants that are native and will naturalize well, but that will also provide a good source for honeybees all throughout the year. Thank you!

ANSWER:

 Landscaping for wildlife and polllinators is a great way to "give back" some of the habitat/ecosystem that we have taken with our built environment so we applaud your efforts.

We encourage you to contact your local agricultural extension service and check out this link to the University of Georgia Honey Bee Program.  They will be able to give you more locally helpful information about plants and can probably put you in contact with a local organization like our local SMABeeWranglers.

You will find that bees are not particular about where they gather nectar and so you will find many non-native plants on lists you may find by doing an internet search.

Unfortunately, our database cannot sort plants according to their wildlife benefit, but that characteristic is noted on the detailed plant information page.  So if you visit the database and do a Combination Search for Georgia, selecting the plant type (shrub) and your conditions (shade and part shade) it will generate lists of plants with links to the detailed page.  You can also create separate lists for bloom time (as you know, your bees will be looking for food throughout the growing season).

Here are some plants that are native to Georgia and may be of interest:

Blooms early spring

Cercis canadensis (Eastern redbud)

Fothergilla gardenii (Dwarf witchalder)

Ilex decidua (Possumhaw)

(all the hollies are good nectar sources for bees)

Blooms spring/summer

Amorpha fruticosa (Indigo bush)

Cephalanthus occidentalis (Common buttonbush)

Vaccinium corymbosum (Highbush blueberry)

Blooms mid summer

Aralia spinosa (Devil's walkingstick)

Baccharis halimifolia (Groundseltree)

Clethra alnifolia (Coastal sweet pepperbush)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

More Wildlife Gardens Questions

Native annuals for pollinators in King County, Washington
February 06, 2014 - I live in King County, Washington State, and I have a plot in a community garden. Rather than plant food, I'd like to attract pollinators. I need to use native annuals rather than perennials as the c...
view the full question and answer

Plants for swan food
July 03, 2012 - Dear Mr Smarty Pants, I have a farm in VA with a large pond or lake fenced in. I am rescuing a pair of swan and want to grow plants around the fence and pond that they can eat. Could you suggest an...
view the full question and answer

Duck-resistant plants for pond in California
March 31, 2005 - I want to plant around a water pond and I need some plants that my ducks will not destroy. Please help.
view the full question and answer

Will shoes pick up American Beautyberry fruit and stain carpets?
March 21, 2010 - Do the berries from American Beautyberry fall on the ground so your shoes pick up the berries to stain the carpet in my house?
view the full question and answer

Native plants for birds and butterflies
June 27, 2008 - We have a home on Lake Sam Rayburn and in the process of putting in some plants and shrubs around our new home. I would like them to be native to the area and attract birds, butterflies and hummingbir...
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.