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Bugs, Bees and Weeds

I was scrolling through Facebook, looking for some inspiration when two articles piqued my interest. One was about the lack of dead insects on our windscreens, and the other was about bees and weeds.

A strange pair of topics, perhaps, but related. Bug populations are declining and the bee crisis has been talked about for some time, although I believe the situation for the latter is improving slightly.

The culprits for both issues are likely to be the use of insecticides on crops and the changing use of the land. While it might seem a good thing to protect our crops from possible insect damage by eradicating the pests that could destroy them, or to pull out the weeds that may choke the tender plant, to ensure healthier crops, bees and bugs, have an important role to play in the cycle of life.

This is not new information. We all know that fruits and vegetables start out as flowers, bees pollinate the flowers, the flowers form the fruits and vegetables, and we eat them. So, no bees equals no food and the end of life as we know it.

And what about the bugs? Well, it's not just the bees that provide pollination! Bugs also help with soil enrichment, breaking down the dead and decaying organic matter to provide rich food for the plants. So again, no bugs, no food, and the end of life as we know it.

And what can we do about it? This is perhaps the point of my post for today. We can let our gardens run a little wild. Let the weeds grow, particularly the dandelions, clovers, nettles, anything that flowers. I have found this advice especially helpful and no longer feel guilty about the dandelions growing wild in my back garden.

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