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Why we leave our garden “messy”

While spring makes us itch to clean up all the winter debris around the Taproom, we’re careful to leave the leaves and the tall stalks in the gardens…but why?

Solitary bees and other beneficial insects overwinter in the dead stalks, and they need 3 solid days of 60+ degrees to emerge!

This past week, we’ve been greeting several queen bumble bees as they visit our garden “weeds” like the volunteer (and medicinal!) purple dead nettle as well as our intentionally planted flowers. 

Unlike queen honey bees who leave the hive only once or twice EVER to mate, queen bumble bees emerge after the winter to stock up on nectar and pollen for their first batch of brood (baby bees!), after which they stay in their hives to lay eggs while the new bees forage and take care of the next batch of bees.

Bumble bees create their intricate nests inside old rodent holes and prefer nest sites in protected areas covered with leaves.

If you’re into helping the pollinators, consider joining us for No Mow May! Don’t worry, you don’t have to let ALL of your lawn get long, just choose a patch or a corner and let it grow. 

If you needed a refresher on No Mow May, the city of Appleton, WI made national news in 2020 for adopting this easy to remember (and easier to do!) way to help pollinators. Researchers in Appleton found 5 times more pollinators in these no-mow lawns compared with traditional lawns. 

We’re letting the dandelions, clover, and other flowers grow to support these pollinators, will you join us?

Cheers to the bees, for they're the ones reminding us how to treat our mother earth: appreciate the beauty around us, cultivate favorite plants, work like hell when the sun is shining, and pollinate (spread love wherever you go!). Join us this weekend to toast to the bees and enjoy their beautifully delicious raw honey in one of our libations!

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