Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Off With Their Heads!

I have bunches of garlic chives growing in the front garden.  They came with the house and they're very tasty.

They have always attracted a lot of bumblebees, which are amusing to watch, but otherwise useless.

But lately, I've been noticing more of these. Honeybees!

It's becoming an issue because all of these flowers turn into seeds and, as much as I like the chives, their use is limited.  I don't need nearly as many as I have growing, so in an effort to slow the takeover of the garden, I have been ripping off the flowers before they go to seed.

Aside from the possibility of getting stung, I have serious problems with the idea of limiting the places for honeybees to hang out.  They seem to be rather rare these days.  Also, as soon as I rip off the flower head, the chives send up a new bud.  The buds are tender and delicious in stir-fries and with eggs, but I can't keep up with the production (and I'm not really crazy about eggs.  Unless they're in pie.  Or cake. Or ice cream).  So I just keep an eye on the flowers and as soon as they show signs of seeds, off with their heads!

I wonder what garlic chive-flavored honey is like.

I think maybe next year I'll try to plant more bee-friendly flowers.


Beth said...

I thought this post was going to be about something else... and sure glad I was wrong. Still chuckling....

The garlic & chives are naturalizing, you should throw them into a bed of daffodils and let the naturalize some where away from the front of the house.

Beth-Pretoria, South Africa

Michele at Sweet Leaf said...

That was my question : What does garlic chive honey taste like? Maybe there's something in it that keeps the bees healthy? The ones who make garlic-chive honey live; the ones who don't get sick. In any case, I'm going to point this out to my friend Bob who keeps bees in Madison. Maybe he'll plant some garlic chives for them!

Peggi said...

I was told to cut the blooms off my chive plant because letting them grow decreases the flavor of the chives. Plant lavender for the bees, they LOVE it.