White Bees!

It is that time of the year when the invasive plant Himalayan balsam (Impatiens glandulifera) is in flower usually along river banks.  This is a good late source of nectar and pollen for bees although the plant is in the top ten invasive plants identified by the Environment Agency for containment and control.

The flower deposits its white pollen on the bees which return to the hive with a distinctive white dusting.  The honey from the nectar is said to be good.  So good news for the bees is bad news for the environment and on balance the impact on other plants which would provide nectar and pollen at other times of the year means that beekeepers should play a part in controlling this plant.