My Mason Bee Homes

The purpose of this page is to suggest alternative structures to house Mason Bee nesting trays. Some ideas will be cosmetic, others will incorporate designs meant to increase the chance of success of the Bee. This is not a commercial site.

I started this site on the 1st. of January, 2019, and will be working diligently to have it completed over the next few weeks or months. Links will at times be added when I have taken designs or information from other sites.

Please search the links along the top this page to see some of the structures I have made. The "More" link will take you to further discussions of components of the houses, materials, and thoughts behind some of the constructions.

Male Mason Bee

Left: Male Mason Bee. First to emerge, mates with as many females as possible, then dies. Does little pollination, does not sting. Smaller than the female.

Right: Female Orchard Mason bee. Emerges after the male, and mates quickly. She is a prolific pollinator. Stings only if provoked, and the sting is very mild, more like a mosquito. She will spend her whole life of several weeks gathering pollen, laying eggs, and adding mud walls to protect them.

Orchard Bee , Osmia Lignaria

Mason bee is a name now commonly used for a species of bee in the genus Osmia, of the family Megachilidae. Mason bees are named for their habit of using mud or other "masonry" products in constructing their nests, which are made in naturally occurring gaps such as between cracks in stones or other small dark cavities; when available some preferentially use hollow stems or holes in wood made by wood-boring insects. The nesting trays used to construct Mason Bee homes try to imitate the holes made by wood boring insects or reeds. Mason Bees cannot bore wood themselves,

Species of the genus Osmia include the Orchard mason bee, Osmia Lignaria, and the blueberry bee, O. ribifloris. Unlike the honey bee, they are native to North America. See more about types.

Because Mason Bees are not capable of boring in wood, they are innocent of any damage that humans find in their own structures.