My husband is a beekeeper with hives of honey bees in our urban back yard. Our garden shed is about 20 feet from the hive stand and the carpenter bees have assaulted the eaves of the shed for several years with more vigor each year. I’ve recently added a cedar trellis (painted) and repainted the shed trim, but am uncertain about using any form of dust to treat the carpenter bees. Honey bees are in full action mode as honey flow began. But we have always taken care to keep dust (Sevin, etc) out of the property because honey bees often confuse it with pollen and it can wipe out a hive. What would you recommend in this situation?
If you review our CARPENTER BEE CONTROL article, you’ll learn that the DRIONE DUST listed needs to be applied directly to their nests and then the nests need to be corked. This means there will be no dust visible or out in the open. And without any dust out in the open, there is no danger or hazard to your honey bees or any other insect for that matter.
In our article you’ll also learn of a product called NBS PAINT ADDITIVE. This is an organic product that can be added to paint or stain and in doing so, provides a “natural repellent odor” that insects hate. Had you added to this to your paint prior to applying it you would have been able to enjoy a good year or two of repellent action without having to spray anything. I strongly suggest you include NBS next time you paint any exposed wood on the outside of your home as this will help to stop anything that would want to target or nest on the painted surface.
Lastly, the NBS is also what I’d recommend you apply to any wood you want to protect now since it can be mixed with water and sprayed. Since it can’t “kill” anything, NBS won’t pose a hazard or threat to your bees either. Made from essential plant oil, NBS will do nothing more than minimize insects landing on surfaces where it gets applied.
Here are direct links to the information and products listed above:
Carpenter Bee Control: http://www.carpenterbees.com/carpenter-bee-control