National Pollinator Week + Dining with Bees

Celebrate National Pollinator Week and learn what you can do to help the bees and other pollinators.

Happy National Pollinator Week!

In celebration, I’m all abuzz with some ‘bee’ favorites for a little tabletop fun in the Potting Shed!


National Pollinator Week is a time to celebrate pollinators and spread the word about what you can do to protect them. Many pollinator populations are in decline attributed to a loss in feeding and nesting habitats. Pollution, the misuse of chemicals, disease, and changes in climatic patterns are all contributing to shrinking and shifting pollinator populations.

Somewhere between 75% and 95% of all flowering plants on the earth need pollinators. Pollinators provide pollination services to over 180,000 different plant species and more than 1200 crops.

That means that we should be grateful for pollinators, as we have them to thank for 1 out of every 3 bites of food we eat.

 Most pollinators (about 200,000 species) are beneficial insects such as flies, beetles, wasps, ants, butterflies, moths, and bees. About 1,000 of all pollinators are vertebrates such as birds, bats, and small mammals.

Pollinators add 217 billion dollars to the global economy and honey bees alone are responsible for between 1.2 and 5.4 billion dollars in agricultural productivity in the United States.

In addition to the food that we eat, pollinators support healthy ecosystems that clean the air, stabilize soils, protect from severe weather, and support other wildlife.

Gardeners are encouraged to create pollinator-friendly habitats with native flowering plants that supply pollinators with nectar, pollen, and homes.

Select old-fashioned varieties of flowers whenever possible, since breeding has caused some modern blooms to lose their fragrance and/or the nectar/pollen needed to attract and feed pollinators.

🐝 Bee Kind to Pollinators:

🐝 Reduce or eliminate the use of pesticides. If you must use them, use the most selective and least toxic ones and apply them at night
when most pollinators aren’t active.

🐝 Plant in clusters to create a “target” for pollinators to find.

🐝 Plant for continuous bloom throughout the growing season from spring to fall.

🐝 Select a site that has shelter from wind (by trees and shrubs), has at least partial sun, and can provide water.

🐝 Allow material from dead branches and logs remain as nesting sites; reduce mulch to allow patches of bare ground for ground-nesting bees to utilize; consider installing wood nesting blocks for wood-nesting natives.

I love stalking bees with my camera. . .salvia and bee balm have been buzzing with bees.

Along with Verbena Lollipop.

Flatware is buzzing with bees for this table. . .

As well as napkin rings.

 Garden flowers and a sunflower ready to bloom, fill a beehive shaped watering can. . .

Along with Bormioli Rocco Quattro Stagioni Canning Jars . . .

That have an adorable embossed (hard to photograph!) bee skep design with fruit and flowers.

A vintage Bradshaw’s Clover Blossom Honey can is blooming with hydrangeas, Queen Anne’s lace, verbena, loosestrife and sunflowers.

 I decided it needed a companion, and found a vintage Beekist Blue Label Honey Tin on eBay to join it in the Potting Shed .

A Woodman’s Famous Bee-Ware Smoker was a find at a favorite antique mall a couple of years ago. . .

  It hangs from rafters in my Potting Shed when it doesn’t hang over the window.

I was smitten with the graphics of the bee keeper on the smoker. . .

Beauty is in the eye of the *bee* holder. ;) 🐝

Did you know most species of bees don’t sting? Female bees are physically capable of
stinging, but most bee species native to the U.S. are “solitary bees,” that is, not living in
colonies and don’t sting unless they are physically threatened or injured. Only honey
bees are defensive and may chase someone who disturbs their hive.

Table Details:

Bee Salad Plates / Tim Coffey for Creative Co-Op

Embossed Bee Skep Plates / Naturewood by Pfaltzgraff, discontinued

Bee Stamped Spoons / MilkandHoneyLuxuries, Etsy

 La Rochere Bee Glasses/ World Market

Wallace Napoleon Bee Flatware/ Horchow

Ratan Chargers/ World Market, several years ago

Flower Chargers / Pier 1, last year

Placemats / Target, several years ago

Bee Table Runner / Sur la Table, several years ago

Bormioli Rocco Quattro Stagioni  Jars / T.J. Maxx

Bee Skeps / retail days

Bee Napkin Rings and Bee Melamine Plates / Amazon

Napkins / Pier 1

Beehive Watering Can / antique mall

Honey Tin Cans and Bee Smoker / vintage

Just Bee 🐝

Find out more about what you can do to help pollinators, HERE.


Thank you for your visit, sharing with:

 Tablescape Thursday

  38 comments for “National Pollinator Week + Dining with Bees

  1. Beatrice
    June 20, 2019 at 7:12 am

    Here in the Alps we have many fruit orchards and solitary bees. All the houses in our neighborhood have bee-friendly gardens, and they put out nesting materials. I installed a bee house, but to date the only inhabitant is a jumping spider. lol

  2. Linda
    June 20, 2019 at 7:44 am

    Love your bee posts. Thank you!

    • Virginia
      June 20, 2019 at 9:21 am

      I really enjoyed your post this morning especially your advice for attracting pollinators. For the past ten years I have been working in the area on the south side of our house which the previous owners used for a vegetable garden. I planted Little Gem Magnolias, Hollys and Crepe Myrtles on the boundaries. My husband built a round raised bed when we first began the project where I spread wildflower seeds. Last year he built a walk with antique bricks so this spring I have been busy planting perennial flowers which have attracted more pollinators. Your advice regarding attracting and keeping them in garden is definitely appreciated. Thank you so much Mary.

  3. Lauren
    June 20, 2019 at 7:45 am

    Such a lovely and informative post. Thank you,

  4. Alice Genzlinger
    June 20, 2019 at 7:48 am

    I found a deceased honey bee in a guest bedroom yesterday and it made me sad. Somehow it got inside the house and couldn’t find it’s way out. I love the little guys and wish I could play with the fat bumble bees❤️

  5. Grace
    June 20, 2019 at 7:49 am

    Thanks for more great information as we plan and work in our gardens! Your place settings are beautiful as always. You are always so creative with flowers and color!! Seeing all the bees reminds me of an incident from my childhood… we had been hauling straw all day and filling the hay mow in the barn up to the rafters. I remember looking up from the wagon and seeing my dad, sweat pouring from his face, his blue chambray shirt soaked with sweat and tons of bees buzzing around and on him front and back! He called them eye bungers! He claimed none had stung him. Why they were so attracted to him was a mystery. We thought it amazing, a true miracle!!!
    After that we always tried to avoid anything that might have a stinger, they might invite their friends to join them!

  6. June 20, 2019 at 8:03 am

    Bee Still My Heart Mary! So much to love on this post! Thank you for reminding us of the importance of pollinators and to be kind to the bees. I’m in love with your wonderful collection of skeps, dishes, spoons and sweet flower arrangements!

  7. Liz
    June 20, 2019 at 8:07 am

    Great post! I have bees and butterflies visiting all the time so I’m glad for that. Love your dishes and that floral arrangement. That solitary semi-opened sunflower looks fabulous! That bee-ware smoker is really neat!

  8. Ann Woleben
    June 20, 2019 at 8:49 am

    I planted more salvia this summer and have been so pleased to see more bees in the garden. One of my friends is a bee keeper and like you, she shares her knowledge of pollinators and their importance. We also get to enjoy her honey!

  9. Ellen
    June 20, 2019 at 8:54 am

    BEEEUTIFUL! My fav is the watering can! We are waiting for blooms to feed our pollinators…very little sun=very little blooms right now!! Praying the rain ends soon!! 🙏🏻🐝❤️🙏🏻🐝

  10. Sue
    June 20, 2019 at 8:56 am

    I thoroughly enjoyed your post – for information and beauty! FYI, you might enjoy reading Dorothea Benton Frank’s latest novel – Queen Bee. It’s a fun and educational summer read.

  11. Vicki
    June 20, 2019 at 9:16 am

    What a wonderful post learned so much about the bee.Thank you !

  12. Donna
    June 20, 2019 at 9:19 am

    So sweet, so coordinated. . . . .you are an inspiration to me. Love it all, esp. the flatware, the smoker, the dishes, the antique honey cans. . . .they are cool holding flowers.

  13. June 20, 2019 at 9:40 am

    Your 🐝 post is so informative, Mary, and all your 🐝 accessories are arranged so 🐝-utifully. It all made me smile this morning with delight. Thank you!

  14. June 20, 2019 at 9:46 am

    That was great fun, I love my pollinators and all things bee too! There are commercial hives across the road from me, several hundred pallets standing 4′ high, I always watch when the beekeepers come, except not as cute as I had hoped, with forklifts and flatbeds hauling them around the state! I have read so many books on bees, the stress level for them is high 😟 … which is why we need potting sheds and home gardens to nurture our humming friends! This year I had the largest apricots I have ever seen, some were 4″ , I thank the bees for making it happen! Darling post, I wanted to honor and play them too in a post, but days slip away so fast from predawn to sunset nothing ever gets done!

  15. June 20, 2019 at 10:32 am

    Your bee tables are some of my most favorites!!! All of your little details are just beeeeyond cute!!! Fabulous, Mary!!

  16. Linda
    June 20, 2019 at 10:50 am

    Awesome tribute to pollinators! I am inspired to do a tablescape too. Love the plates and other decor. You are awesome!

  17. June 20, 2019 at 11:24 am

    Mary, this is a beautiful and informative post! I love all things bee and especially your tablescape in the potting shed. I have so many bees in my garden this year and I am so thrilled! Happy Thursday! 🐝👩🏻‍🌾🐝

  18. Clara
    June 20, 2019 at 11:31 am

    Mary, I love your bee collection & the watering can is a favorite! I was weeding a flower bed this past week near the butterfly bush ( I planted because of your lovely posts) & there were a couple of bees buzzing around & it reminded me of you since you educate us on many important garden facts (thank you!). Did your butterfly bush come back up after the beavers chewed it down? I hope so as I love ours! It is often visited by butterflies or bees & it not only helps nature but it is so enjoyable to watch the bees & butterflies & it also provides lovely blooms for cut flower arrangements. I always enjoy a visit to the potting shed as it is always decorated beautifully! Have a wonderful day! Clara🐝

    • June 20, 2019 at 11:38 am

      Thank you Clara! Our bush is still struggling and tiny in size compared to how it was before being a chewed by the beaver. :) It did finally bloom again a couple of weeks ago for the first time and I was able to cut a few blooms for my jars and arrangements. 🦋🌸

  19. Cyndi Raines
    June 20, 2019 at 11:51 am

    Love everything! It’s a honey of a post. I have pinned it as it is so rich in “bee”- auty! 🐝🐝 Thanks for all the great information regarding pollinators. I never considered flies, beetles, wasps, ants, moths and bats as pollinators! Yikes! I prefer the bees and butterflies, lol. Love those canning jars and of course the lovely bee flatware. So awesome Mary. The touch of flowers in the canning jars is charming also. Love, love, love it! ♥️🐝

  20. June 20, 2019 at 12:16 pm

    Hi Mary,

    This is so pretty — I love everything about this post!! I haven’t visited my blog friends much lately for varied reasons, and I see just how much I’ve missed your creativity and gorgeous photography. I love bee things, too, and you have a great collection. I looked long and hard for the bee skep in our kitchen, but it’s the only one I have. They’re maybe more available now than they were then.

    I love all your bee plates, and of course the Napolean Bee flatware and the La Rochere glasses. The watering can is charming and so are the vintage honey cans and the bee table runner. But without a doubt, the star of this show is those beautiful flowers. They make my heart go pitter patter. :D Thanks for sharing the bee statistics with us. I have heard and read that the populations are in trouble. The only thing I will add is that we have found yellow jackets to be very aggressive bees/wasps. We’ve all gotten stung by them more times than we can count.

    Your tablescape is lovely, Mary — I hope you have a great weekend!!



    • June 20, 2019 at 6:35 pm

      Thank you for your visit and sweet comments Denise! Your comment landed in my spam folder for some reason. Your are right about yellow jackets being very aggressive. They are considered wasps, not bees and and can sting repeatedly unlike a bee. We’re under a severe thunderstorm watch, I’m guessing you are too. Have a good weekend and stay safe ♥

  21. June 20, 2019 at 12:19 pm

    Hi Mary,

    I just left you a really long comment and it said “Publishing” but it didn’t publish. Darn. :D Let me just say that I love every single thing about this post, most especially the bee accessories and your gorgeous flowers. Thanks so much for sharing with us and have a great weekend!



  22. June 20, 2019 at 12:36 pm

    Your photos always leave me breathless :)

  23. Barbara
    June 20, 2019 at 6:05 pm

    Even though I am afraid of bees, I appreciate what they do. The neighbors must think I’m nuts, as I sometimes thank the bees on the flowers right next to me while I’m tending the plants! I also sometimes stroke the bumblebees’ backs very gently with my index finger. They seem to enjoy it. You have the most gorgeous blog! I just joined, even though I’ve lurked for a few years. Thanks so much!

    • June 20, 2019 at 7:08 pm

      Hi Barbara, Thank you for lurking ;) following and taking the time to comment! I love that you thank and pet the bees 🐝

  24. Donna Phillips
    June 20, 2019 at 8:37 pm

    Mary, thank you for your post today . It was filled with so many wonderful things but I especially loved the stamped spoons with bee motif !
    Thank you for all of your creative a beautiful posts .

  25. Darlene
    June 20, 2019 at 11:32 pm

    Wonderful information regarding our bee friends. I will share with the grandchildren in hopes they will understand how much they do for us, I even learned a thing or two!
    Bee plates are perfect for out door dining with no worry of breaking yet so pretty.
    A beautiful read, thank you for sharing.

  26. Shirley Graham
    June 20, 2019 at 11:35 pm

    We have had so much rain that my poor flowers are trying their best but it’s tough! Thank you so much for your blog – love the plates & spoons. I hope to see my little bumble bees again soon, just hope they haven’t drowned! Thanks again!!!

  27. June 21, 2019 at 5:37 am

    That’s one of my favorite sets of flatware Mary! Yep, the bees work hard, we are grateful:@)

  28. Rita C.
    June 21, 2019 at 8:44 am

    I love H&B stamped spoons, what a great assortment you have here. I can so relate to stalking the bees in the garden. Thank you for keeping all the good things about gardening in the forefront, Mary. Pollination is such a wonderful reward in gardening. Your little nods throughout your potting shed displays are heart-warming.

  29. June 21, 2019 at 9:56 am

    Mary, you are indeed the “Queen” Bee!! I have learned so much reading about the importance of bees from your posts, I now even save them when they land in the pool by mistake and can’t get out! Your collection of bee things is quite fabeelous! So many wonderful finds, and it’s such fun to spot all the little bee details…of course I love the stamped spoons, and your plate collection, *swoon* Looks like a hot weekend ahead, get out in your garden early! 👒

  30. Debbie
    June 21, 2019 at 10:05 am

    Mary, I so enjoy reading your post! They are such an inspiration. Thanks for bringing us important information about the bees. It helps us to be more aware and I want to plant more flowers!!

  31. Faye
    June 21, 2019 at 12:16 pm

    Mary…..I love everything about your site with its pictures, recipes and pertinent information. The dogs are precious, the husband is handsome, but I would also love to see a snapshot of the talented Mary. Any chance of that?

  32. June 22, 2019 at 11:17 am

    Aw….Mary—I love your bee posts. Yes, despite my severe bee allergy, we have an extensive vegetable garden and cultivate for bees. We use peppermint plants in pots as a repellant in ‘people’ areas. Love your bee decor!!!

  33. Dorinda Selke
    June 23, 2019 at 6:08 pm

    Mary I really found this post very informative for me. I am very interested in preserving our pollinators. I pinned some of your beautiful pictures and made a new Pinterest board for them! “Bee kind to Pollinators”. 🐝 Thanks for a beautiful and interesting blog. Hugs, Dorinda

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