LEARN: 3. Tips for Success

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3.3 Drilled Wood and Bamboo

3.3 Drilled Wood and Bamboo

Healthy nesting materials: our nesting materials are breathable, the right size, the right depth, the right thickness, and designed to be easy to open and clean for cocoon harvest.

Our nesting materials are designed for the health of our bees in mind first. Nesting holes should be opened to separate healthy bee cocoons from pests and disease. When they walk through unopened and infected nesting chambers, adult bees spread diseases and pests throughout your garden and bee house. Removing cocoons from nesting holes and managing them as loose cocoons significantly reduces the spread of diseases and pests.

Nesting holes should be at least 6” deep to encourage bees to lay female eggs. Female eggs are laid at the back of the nesting holes to protect the developing bees. Drilled blocks of wood and bamboo tubes are typically shorter than 6” long. Bamboo tubes are cut randomly so that nodes make the bamboo tubes even shorter than they appear.

Drilled blocks of wood are not easy to open and bamboo nesting tubes have thick walls that can not be easily taken apart. We do not recommend drilled blocks of wood and bamboo tubes because they inhibit opening for cocoon harvest.

  • For spring mason bees: Upgrade to any of our spring mason bee nesting materials. Add our Easy-Tear Inserts to your drilled wood nesting holes and leave a bit of the insert sticking out for easy removal in the fall. Bamboo tube nesting hole sizes vary too much to be lined with Easy-Tear Inserts.
  • For summer leafcutter bees: Upgrade from your drilled wood to our wood nesting trays, which are easy to open for spring cocoon harvest.
  • To upgrade from drilled wood and bamboo to better nesting materials, follow our Moving Day for Native Bees instructions.

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