Asked June 7, 2020, 9:48 PM EDT

Do flower blossoms keep producing nectar after bees and humming birds feed on them?

Clackamas County Oregon

1 Response

Thank you for your question. Another way to frame your question is: ‘do bees still visit flowers that no longer are producing nectar (and pollen)’? The amazing thing about our environment is that insects and plants (and, often, fungi) have life cycles that synchronize with each other. Just as bears hibernate when food is scarce, insects hibernate, die, or are changed into different forms (metamorphosis) depending on what is available around them. The timing of bees, hummingbirds (and other pollinators) in visiting flowers for food corresponds with the flowers’ nectar. Flowers use nectar to attract pollinators (for food), but what the flowers need is an agent (the pollinator)to transfer pollen so seeds are created. Once the nectar is gone, fewer pollinators visit, the flower disappears, and is replaced by a seed. No need for nectar. Job is finished. And the bees, hummingbirds, ants, flies, beetles, moths and butterflies must find other food sources.