I made another little bee hotel for our “solitary bee” friends today. For this one I started with some pieces of clay sewer pipe and filled the with bamboo. The hollow bamboo should be a good place for Mason bees and Leafcutter bees to nest. I don’t expect this bee hotel to be populated until next season. Once there, the bees will lay eggs in the hollow bamboo stems in early spring or summer.
There are folks out there commercially making bee hotels, but it seems to me that it is not necessary to have anything fancy. I think as long as I can meet the basic needs of the bees, they will move in, even if their housing complex does not look like it came out of a factory. I suspect they won’t appreciate the hobby horse or the Ellie Mae memorial garden, complete with giant crown.