* Most of the important bee plants in the Northeast are wildflowers. Of these, probably the single most valuable early spring wildflower is the dandelion. If a hive survives the winter, beekeepers know the bees will be safe from starvation if they can stay alive until dandelions bloom.
** The dandelion plant is a beneficial weed, with a wide range of uses, and is even a good companion plant for gardening. Its taproot will bring up nutrients for shallower-rooting plants, and add minerals and nitrogen to soil. It is also known to attract pollinating insects and release ethylene gas which helps fruit to ripen.
Native Plant Garden- In this garden we’ve left many of the dandelions to grow for the bees. The pretty dandelions are very important spring flowers providing essential food in the way of pollen and nectar.
* Source: Save the Dandelions. Save the Bees: http://www.mnn.com/food/healthy-eating/blogs/save-the-dandelions-save-the-bees
** Source: Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taraxacum