Trees flowering in
Feb, March, April, May, June, July, Aug, Sept, Oct
Trees are an incredibly important source of food for bees and other pollinators. In part due to their large size which contains thousands of flower heads giving the pollinators their important source of food in one place.
The criteria used by councils, or charities, when selecting trees to plant often fails to include their usefulness to pollinators. Yet pollinators, especially bees, require forage from early spring through to late autumn, and native trees, including hazel, alder and pussy willow can provide early sources of pollen when few plants are in flower.
The advantage of planting native wild flowering trees is that the larvae of many native butterflies and moths rely on tree foliage. However, there are some late flowering non native trees, such as Chinese privet, the bee-bee tree and loquat, which can provide a valuable source of autumn nectar. So it is important that a proportion of non natives as well as natives, are included in a selection of pollinator-friendly trees.
If street trees are planted close to community gardens, urban farms, parks and other open green areas, then habitat can be created in those spaces for wild bumblebees and solitary bees, generating pollination streams or 'eddies' between street and garden, farm or park.
Trails or 'rivers' of insect pollinated street trees can link these areas of urban forage with one another enabling flying insects to negotiate a less hazardous and a more nutritiously rewarding path through urban areas.