Tag Archives: purchase

Where to buy mason bee houses

The following companies or individuals sell bee houses that have 6″ (152 mm) nesting holes, have disposable or cleanable components, have protective roof overhangs (usually), are not suspended with string, and do not use bamboo.

There is no perfect house, so do a little research with local bee experts to see what might be best for your area. Also, no single house is going to attract all types of bees. Figure out what type of bee you want and then find a house that suits it. Personally, I’m a fan of having several houses. Then you can situate them in different parts of your yards, a separation that reduces (slightly) the ability of parasitic wasps to lay eggs in the tunnels. Plus with several houses I can vary the diameter of the nesting holes. I’m increasingly fond of the super small wasps and bees that like to nest in holes. If you can’t find something perfect, make it yourself.

Houses with replaceable nesting tubes, reeds, or blocks

Houses with stackable, cleanable nesting trays

Houses with observation windows

If I’ve missed somebody, send me a note and I’ll update this post.

I don’t see the need to buy the bees themselves. In fact, sending animals in the mail can result in their deaths when postal trucks heat up. More broadly, sending bees from one area to another might mess with local adaption (i.e., bees from one area might not have evolved to do well everywhere) and also introduce hidden pests and diseases. If you put out a good house, in a good location, and have mud and native plants … the local bees will find you.

Here’s a guide to avoiding death-trap bee houses that are for sale at most garden centers. If you’re handy, you can also make your own (it’s fun).