Hay grass filled shelter for bumblebees created using a small terracotta pot

How to make a bumblebee pot

Do it:

Sep, Oct, Nov

Takes just:

15 minutes

Bumblebees are important pollinators of early flowering plants and can 'disengage' their wings in cold weather, vibrating wing muscles to warm their bodies. In autumn and early winter, queen bumblebees look for a warm, dry home - often using old vole or shrew holes. This simple bumblebee pot will save them the trouble.

You will need

Once 10cm terracotta pot

Garden moss

Pet hay

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Take a clay pot and pop a small clump of moss from your garden over the drainage hole.

Loosely fill the pot with hay so that the moss drops when the pot is turned over, allowing access for the bee.

Choose a warm sheltered spot, such as the foot of a hedge. Scrape away a little soil, enough to bury half the pot. Turn the pot upside down into the hole and push the soil back around it.

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Kate Bradbury

Kate Bradbury says

Queen bumblebees hibernate in a variety of locations, including holes in the ground. If you dig up a bumblebee in winter, don’t re-bury her – simply transfer her to a sheltered, dry spot such as a pile of dry leaves. She’ll quickly settle down again.

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