Published: Tuesday, 17th October 2017
Pupils at Drayton Community Infant School have planted dozens of crocus bulbs in their school garden in an effort to keep Broadland’s bees buzzing.
The bee-friendly bulbs have been provided by Broadland District Council as part of the council’s Keep Broadland Buzzing project which has given more than 19,000 free crocus bulbs to 35 community groups and hundreds of residents across the district. When planted in the autumn, crocuses can provide an extra helping hand to bees when they bloom early in the spring.
In springtime, food can be particularly sparse for bees but crocus flowers can provide a vital, protein-rich food source for hungry bees. This early boost in energy can help set them up for a successful season.
Bees are central to the eco-system, meaning it is important that everyone makes the extra effort to take care of them. As they are excellent pollinators, around one third of food is pollinated by bees, helping some of the nation’s favourite foods be put on plates. Just as importantly, bees also help other animals in the food chain and assist in maintaining the genetic diversity of pollinated plants, giving them a stronger chance of survival.
The Drayton school pupils have been learning about the importance of bees during their after-school garden club and were excited to be a part of the project.
Alyson Clarke, who co-ordinates the club, said:
"One of the aims of the garden club is to teach the children about how nature plays a part in everyday life. By planting early flowering bulbs we can demonstrate to the children the importance of providing food for bees and insects, and teach them how the bees are pollinators and essential in food production."
Cllr John Fisher, portfolio holder for environmental excellence, lent a hand at the garden club. He said:
“I really want to say thank you to the school pupils for getting involved with our bee project. Crops across the country rely on the pollination of bees so it is important that we look after them. The reaction from residents has been great and I think that Broadland’s bees should certainly be able to thrive in spring. Thank you to everyone who has got involved.”