Although today was windy and not great for watching bees and butterflies, earlier in the week the sunshine brought them out. The annual sweet Williams are particularly popular with butterflies such as this peacock (Inachis io).
I sowed mixed annuals for the bees but phacelia dominated the mix, apart from the sunflowers I planted. Fortunately phacelia is loved by bees and is one of the few plants that seems to attract both honeybees and bumble bees – honeybees seem much more picky. Curiously the honeybees seem to visit to collect pollen while the bumble bees search for nectar.
The few borage plants that grew are definitely more popular with honey bees.
Antirrhinums are definitely bumble bee flowers. Honeybees cannot get in to the blooms to get to the nectar and even the smaller species of bumble bees have trouble. But the big bees have no trouble, forcing the flowers open and climbing in so that only their furry bottom is exposed. The bees often clamber from bloom to bloom up the stems.