Koppert bumblebees ensure natural pollination in both indoor and outdoor crops. We will delve into the key principles of outdoor crop pollination and explore practical advice to maximize pollination rates and overall crop productivity. From attracting pollinators to implementing pollination techniques, we aim to equip you with the knowledge and tools needed to ensure bountiful and thriving outdoor crops. Good pollination in outdoor crops can be achieved by following the recommendations shown below.
Tips for outdoor pollination
Introduce bumblebees to the area 4-7 days before the flowering period begins. The bees will start pollinating as soon as the flowers open. Ensure that the hive is positioned in the crop immediately after delivery or within one day to allow the bumblebees to find food sources.
To maximize pollination results, evenly position the hives throughout the plot. The number of hives required depends on the crop and the presence of other pollinating insects. Position the hive horizontally, so that the bumblebees always have access to the sugar water supplied with the hive. Read more about optimal placement of bumblebees hives here.
Coexistence of bumblebees and honeybees
Bumblebees and honeybees can work together to enhance pollination. You can release both types of bees into the same crops. However, maintain a minimum distance of 100 meters between bumblebee and honeybee hives, keeping the honeybees out of sight. This precaution is necessary to prevent honeybees from being attracted to the sugar water in the bumblebee hives, especially if the main crop is not yet flowering.
Hive settling period
Allow the bumblebees to calm down after positioning the hive. Wait for at least 30 minutes before opening the hive doors. The transportation and shaking movements may make the bumblebees restless initially.
Temperature and shade
Protect the bumblebee hive from excessive heat caused by direct sunlight, especially during warm periods. Ensure sufficient shade for the hive by positioning it in the shadow of the crop or providing additional cover. Read more about bumblebees in heat here.
Keep the underside of the hive dry to maintain optimal hive conditions. Make sure the hive entrance is visible to both humans and bumblebees during the flowering period. You can achieve this by placing the hive on a crate or stack of stones. Additionally, remove any flowering weeds in and around the pollination area, as bumblebees may visit them instead of the target crop.
Safeguard the hive against strong winds by placing it in a sheltered spot or securing it in place with weights or other stabilizing measures.
Exercise caution when using pesticides before and during flowering. Some pesticides can be harmful for bumblebees and may also have long-term effects. Discuss the matter with your advisor alternatively consult our side–effect app.
By following these guidelines, you can optimize the effectiveness of bumblebee pollination in your crops.