We have a large holly tree in our back yard very near our deck. Every spring this tree attracts wood boring bees.

Jody L
by Jody L
Any suggestions how to ward off the hole drilling pests? Can't remove the tree till the bee cycle is done......a bit perilous for the tree removal crew.
  9 answers
  • SawHorse Design Build SawHorse Design Build on Mar 17, 2012
    I think that I heard Walter Reeves many years ago suggest that you hire a kid with a badminton racquet and pay them per bee swatted until they are gone.
  • 3po3 3po3 on Mar 17, 2012
    UC Cooperative Extension offers some good information here: http://www.ipm.ucdavis.edu/PMG/PESTNOTES/pn7417.html
  • Donna McCrummen Donna McCrummen on Mar 18, 2012
    LOL @ Sawhorse. Are they carpenter bees? The big ones that kind of just hover in place? We had those in VA - they were so big and cute we were tempted to put our favorite one on a lease and name him. If I recall in our effort to deal with that issue carpenter bees don't sting but can do a lot of damage to your house. Check your deck for little holes they may be drilling. Our exterminator shot some powdery stuff in the holes but they always came back. So, if you think the tree is drawing them and the bees in fact don't sting cut the tree down. IMHO
  • Douglas Hunt Douglas Hunt on Mar 18, 2012
    If they are are carpenter bees, they an important pollinator for many open-faced spring flowers such as the blossoms of fruiting trees-crabapple, apple, pear, peach, plum, and wild cherry-as well as holly, which is why they probably keep coming back to your tree. The damage done to wood is usually minimal and cosmetic. See this article from the North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service: http://www.ces.ncsu.edu/depts/ent/notes/Urban/carpenterbees.htm
  • 360 Sod (Donna Dixson) 360 Sod (Donna Dixson) on Mar 18, 2012
    Walter mention some gadget you can build for a trap (i think) on his show a while back ...will look and see if I can find the link. here ya go http://www.walterreeves.com/gardening-q-and-a/carpenter-bee-build-your-own-trap/
  • SawHorse Design Build SawHorse Design Build on Mar 18, 2012
    @Shabby- you are correct- they don't sting but can eat up your house. We had them on our house and ended up replacing the siding since we would not win the battle otherwise. I think that they still come around to spread the pollen, then just come from the woods next to our house now and not our house.
  • Jody L Jody L on Mar 18, 2012
    SAWHORSE...Thanks for the morning chuckle! I guess we'll just have to deal with them. It is amazing how quickly they can bore perfect little holes in the deck. Love the shade the tree provides but, it's gotta go!
  • SawHorse Design Build SawHorse Design Build on Mar 18, 2012
    @Jody- I love the look of wood. However it just does not fair well in GA. Between termites, rot, bees, carpenter ants and all of the sun and humidity it has a hard time lasting very long with our modern designs. Older houses had lead paint and overhangs plus good toxic pest controls that help keep insects under control. The alternative is composite siding and decking. Fiber cement siding has come a long way and can look great. There are many decking materials that are rot and insect proof since they contain little or no organic material.
  • Brad S Brad S on Mar 18, 2012
    Go to you tube "no sting bee trap".