Mason bees are solitary bees that do not sting and make wonderful pollinators. They like to nest in narrow holes or hollow twigs. You can buy bee mason homes to give them a place to lay their eggs and then pollinate your garden. However, I thought it would cheap and easy to make my own bee mason home.
Bamboo makes the perfect hollow tube to make a bee mason house. Bamboo is an invasive species here in South Carolina, so it is not hard to find. The ideal hole size for mason bees is 5/16". I got a variety of bamboo sizes, so hopefully enough of them will be the right size.
For the structure of the bee mason house I used an old bird feeder. I've seen where people have used flower pots, wide pipes, or built a structure. The only important thing about the structure is that it has a back to prevent wind from blowing through the holes.
I took out the plastic on one side of the bird feeder and then began cutting the bamboo to fit, which was about three inches.
Then I stacked the bamboo in the birdhouse, using the smaller pieces to fill in the gaps.
Now its time to hang it up and wait to see if the mason bees approve of my home building. I read that the best location for bee mason houses is facing the morning sun.
The bee mason house is up and ready for some spring tenants that will hopefully decide to make my garden their new home.