Right smack dab in the middle of the Susans Bed is where the humble Bumbles are gathering these days.
You'll find them on the last of the ex-asters which looks as fresh as the first blooms in September.
Miss Bessie, or Willow Leaved Aster/Symphyotrichum praealtum is a late blooming native that was introduced to me by my friend and fellow gardenblogger Sweetbay. It's THE gathering place for all the bumbles at the end of a hard day!
These gentle pollinators rarely get riled as they go about their business of collecting pollen and nectar for their young. Females can sting, but, as long as I've gardened I've never seen them be anything but, curious at my antics. Let them bee in your garden. Give them leaves and soil to nest in and flowers to sup from. You will be rewarded with an up close and personal 'friendship'....and, pollinated crops!
Here is what I want you to do~Get as close as you can to a bumble. Close enough to hear their buzzing. Now watch and listen carefully. Bees beat their wings approximately 200 times a second, but, the buzzing you're hearing is not their wings. It's the vibration of their thorax muscle! A muscle in their chest that's designed to pump and warm them internally. This warmth allows them to lift and fly about the garden on cool days. They are the first pollinators up and about each morning and the last to leave my garden at night!
Now, when I see them sleeping in the cool autumn morning~I find myself waiting and ready to announce~
Bumbles start your engine!