Ok, not all sunflowers are native, but they are disc flowers with A LOT of flowers in the center of those showy ray flowers –the petals– that humans seem to think are the important part of the flower.
The disc flowers are the actual flower and pack a lot of pollen and nectar into a very small area. A bee will arrive and dip, dip, dip her proboscis into flower after flower after flower. That is very efficient for the bee. She can go to one spot, load up and return to her nest.
Other disc-type flowers that bees and other pollinators love include:
So why sunflowers today? Yes, it is S day, but also…
Happy Earth Day!
It’s the 50th anniversary of Earth Day!
We squirrels discovered that Google is celebrating today, too, with a special flower and bee game.
Play the Google Earth Day game, but also play in real life!
Plant flowers! Attract bees!
Zinnias and Sunflowers grow from seed very quickly. Just ignore Miz Flora twitching her tail while we tell you that. We squirrels are are all about our native plants, but with these disc flowers, we can supplement bee food out there in quantities. Safe quantities! BEE sure your seed is not treated with neonicotinoids!
Don’t know what that is? Watch this bee researcher’s Ted Talk to learn more about bees, why they are dying and how you can help:
Also, Google is famous for these cute nature messages. We well remember their 2018 post about Jane Goodall.