top of page

For many years, when living in Lichfield,I built up a collection of solitary bee habitats on a sunny wall in a sheltered part of my patio. I have become increasingly interested in these fascinating insects and, each year, I have added, adapted and experimented with different bee habitats to try to create successful breeding chambers for them.


When I moved to Wales, I left many of my solitary bee habitat on the sunny fence, where they had always been and the new owners were happy about that! Here in Wales, I have started again, with just a few boxes that I have brought with me. I am keen to build up lots of new spaces for solitary bees at Gwyllt Hollow as I am sure I will discover many new species around here, compared to Lichfield.

Supporting Solitary Bees


What are Solitary Bees?.....

Most species of bee in the UK are solitary and do not live in colonies like bumblebees or honeybees.  They are very important pollinators, but tend not to be as well-known about as their social relatives. Some species nest below ground and others use plant stems, holes in mortar or artificial habitat, such as mine.

  I was surprised at how little people knew about what happens inside the tubes of a solitary bee habitat, often known as a Bee 'Hotel'. These tubes are used for breeding. Females create individual 'cells' inside the stems using mud or leaves, into which they lay an egg. Each cell is then packed full of pollen, providing food for the larvae as it grows over  the warm summer months.  The offspring chew their way out of the nest and emerge as adults around April/May.These bees are totally safe to have in the garden as they do not sting. Many species do not even have a sting. These bees are highly efficient pollinators and we should all do our bit to encourage them into our gardens, as they are both fascinating to watch and a valuable part of your garden ecosystem.

  I also created some videos to explain what happens inside these tubes and how you can make your own solitary bee 'hotel' of your own.

Learn more about Solitary Bees

Learn about what happens inside a solitary bee 'hotel'.

How to make your own simple Bee 'hotel'

Why build your own Bee Habitat and what do you need?

See some of my other homemade bee habitats


These great infographics have been produced by Xavier McNally. You can follow him on Twitter @air_beenbee

bottom of page