List of crop plants pollinated by bees

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Pollination by insects is called entomophily. Entomophily is a form of plant pollination whereby pollen is distributed by insects, particularly bees, Lepidoptera (e.g. butterflies and moths), flies and beetles. Honey bees will pollinate many plant species that are not native to their natural habitat but are often inefficient pollinators of such plants. Some plants, such as root vegetables and salad crops, will produce a useful food crop without pollination when grown from seed but may require insect pollination to produce seeds for the next generation.

This is not a list of plants that are pollinated only by the honeybee. The majority of these crops are pollinated in whole or part by other kinds of bees or insects.

Common name Latin name Pollinator Commercial product
of pollination
Pollinator
impact
number of
honey bee hives
per acre
Geography of cultivation
Okra Abelmoschus esculentus Honey bees (incl. Apis cerana), Solitary bees (Halictus spp.) fruit 2-modest temperate
Kiwifruit Actinidia deliciosa Honey bees, Bumblebees, Solitary bees fruit 4-essential
Bucket orchid Coryanthes Male Euglossini bees (Orchid bees)
Onion Allium cepa Honey bees, Solitary bees seed temperate
Cashew Anacardium occidentale Honey bees, Stingless bees, Bumblebees, Solitary bees (Centris tarsata), Butterflies, Flies, hummingbirds nut 3-great tropical
Atemoya, Cherimoya, Custard apple Annona squamosa Nitidulid Beetles fruit 4-essential tropical
Celery Apium graveolens Honey bees, Solitary bees, Flies seed temperate
Strawberry tree Arbutus unedo Honey bees, Bumblebees fruit 2-modest
American Pawpaw Asimina triloba Carrion Flies, Dung Flies fruit 4-essential temperate
Carambola, Starfruit Averrhoa carambola Honey bees, Stingless bees fruit 3-great tropical
Brazil nut Bertholletia excelsa Bumblebees, Orchid bees (Euglossini), Carpenter bees nut 4-essential tropical
Beet Beta vulgaris Hover Flies, Honey bees, Solitary bees seed 1-little temperate
Mustard Brassica alba, Brassica hirta, Brassica nigra Honey bees, Solitary bees (Osmia cornifrons, Osmia lignaria) seed 2-modest temperate
Rapeseed Brassica napus Honey bees, Solitary bees seed 2-modest temperate
Broccoli Brassica oleracea cultivar Honey bees, Solitary bees seed temperate
Cauliflower Brassica oleracea Botrytis Group Honey bees, Solitary bees seed temperate
Cabbage Brassica oleracea Capitata Group Honey bees, Solitary bees seed temperate
Brussels sprouts Brassica oleracea Gemmifera Group Honey bees, Solitary bees seed temperate
Chinese cabbage Brassica rapa Honey bees, Solitary bees seed temperate
Turnip, Canola Brassica rapa Honey bees, Solitary bees (Andrena ilerda, Osmia cornifrons, Osmia lignaria, Halictus spp.), Flies seed 3-great 1 temperate
Pigeon pea, Cajan pea, Congo bean Cajanus cajan Honey bees, Solitary bees (Megachile spp.), Carpenter bees seed 1-little
Jack bean, Horse bean, Sword bean Canavalia spp. Solitary bees, Carpenter bees (Xylocopa confusa) seed 2-modest
Chilli pepper, Red pepper, Bell pepper, Green pepper Capsicum annuum, Capsicum frutescens Honey bees, Stingless bees (Melipona spp.), Bumblebees, Solitary bees, Hover flies fruit 1-little (pollinators important in green houses to increase fruit weight, but less in open fields)
Papaya Carica papaya Honey bees, thrips, large sphinx moths, Moths, Butterflies fruit 1-little
Safflower Carthamus tinctorius Honey bees, Solitary bees seed 1-little
Caraway Carum carvi Honey bees, Solitary bees, Flies seed 2-modest temperate
Chestnut Castanea sativa Honey bees, Solitary bees nut 2-modest temperate
Star apple, Cainito Chrysophyllum cainito Insects, Bats fruit 1-little tropical
Watermelon Citrullus lanatus Honey bees, Bumblebees, Solitary bees fruit 4-essential 1-3 temperate
Tangerine Citrus tangerina Honey bees, Bumblebees fruit 1-little sub-tropical
Tangelo Citrus spp. Honey bees, Bumblebees fruit 1-little sub-tropical
Coconut Cocos nucifera Honey bees, Stingless bees nut 2-modest tropical
Coffea spp. Coffea arabica, Coffea canephora Coffea spp. Honey bees, Stingless bees, Solitary bees fruit 2-modest tropical
Cola nut Cola nitida, Cola vera, Cola acuminata Flies nut 3-great
Coriander Coriandrum sativum Honey bees, Solitary bees seed 3-great
Crownvetch Coronilla varia L. Honey bees, Bumblebees, Solitary bees seed (increased yield from pollinators) temperate
Hazelnut Corylus cornuta var. californica Wind pollinated. nut temperate
Azarole Crataegus azarolus Honey bees, Solitary bees fruit 1-little
Cantaloupe, Melon Cucumis melo L. Honey bees, Squash bees, Bumblebees, Solitary bees (Ceratina spp.) fruit 4-essential 2-4 temperate
Cucumber Cucumis sativus Honey bees, Squash bees, Bumblebees, Leafcutter bee (in greenhouse pollination), Solitary bees (for some parthenocarpic gynoecious green house varieties pollination is detrimental to fruit quality) fruit 3-great 1-2 temperate
Squash (plant), Pumpkin, Gourd, Marrow, Zucchini Cucurbita spp. Honey bees, Squash bees, Bumblebees, Solitary bees fruit 4-essential 1 temperate
Guar bean, Goa bean Cyamopsis tetragonoloba Honey bees seed 1-little
Quince Cydonia oblonga Mill. Honey bees fruit temperate
Lemon Honey bees fruit temperate
Lime Honey bees fruit temperate
Carrot Daucus carota Flies, Solitary bees, Honey bees seed temperate
Hyacinth bean Dolichos spp. Honey bees, Solitary bees seed 2-modest
Longan Dimocarpus longan Honey bees, Stingless bees 1-little
Persimmon Diospyros kaki, Diospyros virginiana Honey bees, Bumblebees, Solitary bees fruit 1-little
Durian Durio zibethinus Bats, birds 3-great tropical
Oil palm Elaeis guineensis Weevils, Thrips seed 1-little tropical
Cardamom Elettaria cardamomum Honey bees, Solitary bees 3-great
Loquat Eriobotrya japonica Honey bees, Bumblebees fruit 3-great
Buckwheat Fagopyrum esculentum Honey bees, Solitary bees seed 3-great 1 temperate
Feijoa Feijoa sellowiana Honey bees, Solitary bees fruit 3-great tropical
Fig Ficus spp. Fig wasps (incl. Blastophaga psenes)[1][2] fruit (syconium) 2-modest sub-tropical
Fennel Foeniculum vulgare Honey bees, Solitary bees, Flies seed 3-great temperate
Strawberry Fragaria spp. Honey bees, Stingless bees, Bumblebees, Solitary bees (Halictus spp.), Hover flies fruit 2-modest 1 temperate
Stanhopea Stanhopea Male Euglossini bees (Orchid bees)
Cotton Gossypium spp. Honey bees, Bumblebees, Solitary bees seed, fiber 2-modest
Sunflower Helianthus annuus Bumblebees, Solitary bees, Honey bees seed 2-modest 1 temperate
Walnut Juglans spp. Wind pollinated. nut temperate
Flax Linum usitatissimum Honey bees, Bumblebees, Solitary bees seed 1-little temperate
Lychee Litchi chinensis Honey bees, Flies fruit 1-little
Lupine Lupinus angustifolius L. Honey bees, Bumblebees, Solitary bees seed temperate
Macadamia Macadamia ternifolia Honey bees, Stingless bees (Trigona carbonaria), Solitary bees (Homalictus spp.), Wasps, Butterflies nut 4-essential tropical
Acerola Malpighia glabra Honey bees, Solitary bees fruit (minor commercial value)
Apple Malus domestica, or Malus sylvestris Honey bees, orchard mason bee, Bumblebees, Solitary bees (Andrena spp., Halictus spp., Osmia spp., Anthophora spp.), Hover flies (Eristalis cerealis, Eristalis tenax) fruit 3-great 1, 2 semi dwarf, 3 dwarf temperate
Mammee apple Mammea americana Bees fruit 2-modest tropical
Mango Mangifera indica Honey bees, Stingless bees, Flies, Ants, Wasps fruit 3-great sub-tropical
Sapodilla Manikara zapotilla Thrips fruit 4-essential tropical
Alfalfa Medicago sativa Alfalfa leafcutter bee, Alkali bee, Honey bees seed 1 temperate
Rambutan Nephelium lappaceum Honey bees, Stingless bees, Flies fruit

1-little

tropical
Cactus, Prickly pear Opuntia spp. Bumblebees, Solitary bees fruit 2-modest
Sainfoin Onobrychis spp. Honey bees, Solitary bees seed temperate
Passion fruit. Maracuja Passiflora edulis Carpenter bees, Solitary bees, Bumblebees, humming birds fruit 4-essential tropical
Avocado Persea americana Stingless bees, Solitary bees, Honey bees fruit 3-great
Lima bean, Kidney bean, Haricot bean, Adzuki bean, Mungo bean, String bean, Green bean Phaseolus spp. Honey bees, Solitary bees fruit, seed 1-little
Scarlet runner bean Phaseolus coccineus L. Bumblebees, Honey bees, Solitary bees, Thrips seed
Allspice Pimenta dioica Honey bees, Solitary bees (Halictus spp., Exomalopsis spp., Ceratina spp.) 3-great
Apricot Prunus armeniaca Honey bees, Bumblebees, Solitary bees, Flies fruit 3-great 1 temperate
Sweet Cherry Prunus avium spp. Honey bees, Bumblebees, Solitary bees, Flies fruit 3-great temperate
Sour cherry Prunus cerasus Honey bees, Bumblebees, Solitary bees, Flies fruit 3-great temperate
Plum, Greengage, Mirabelle, Sloe Prunus domestica, Prunus spinosa Honey bees, Bumblebees, Solitary bees, Flies fruit 3-great 1 temperate
Almond Prunus dulcis, Prunus amygdalus, or Amygdalus communis Honey bees, Bumblebees, Solitary bees (Osmia cornuta), Flies nut 3-great 2-3 temperate
Peach, Nectarine Prunus persica Honey bees, Bumblebees, Solitary bees, Flies fruit 3-great 1 temperate
Guava Psidium guajava Honey bees, Stingless bees, Bumblebees, Solitary bees (Lasioglossum spp.) fruit 2-modest tropical
Pomegranate Punica granatum Honey bees, Solitary bees, Beetles fruit 2-modest
Pear Pyrus communis Honey bees, Bumblebees, Solitary bees, Hover flies (Eristalis spp.) fruit 3-great 1 temperate
Black currant, Red currant Ribes nigrum, Ribes rubrum Honey bees, Bumblebees, Solitary bees fruit 2-modest temperate
Rose hips, Dogroses Rosa spp. Honey bees, Bumblebees, Carpenter bees, Solitary bees, Hover flies 3-great temperate
Boysenberry Rubus spp. Honey bees, Bumblebees, Solitary bees fruit temperate
Raspberry Rubus idaeus Honey bees, Bumblebees, Solitary bees, Hover flies (Eristalis spp.) fruit 3-great 1 temperate
Blackberry Rubus fruticosus Honey bees, Bumblebees, Solitary bees, Hover flies (Eristalis spp.) fruit 3-great temperate
Elderberry Sambucus nigra Honey bees, Solitary bees, Flies, Longhorn beetles fruit 2-modest temperate
Sesame Sesamum indicum Honey bees, Solitary bees, Wasps, Flies seed 2-modest
Eggplant Solanum melongena Bumblebees, Solitary bees fruit 2-modest (pollinators important in green houses, but less in open fields) temperate
Naranjillo Solanum quitoense Bumblebees, Solitary bees fruit 3-great tropical
Rowanberry Sorbus aucuparia Honey bees, Solitary bees, Bumblebees, Hover flies fruit 4-essential temperate
Service Tree Sorbus domestica Bees, Flies fruit 2-modest
Hog plum Spondias spp. Honey bees, Stingless bees (Melipona spp.) fruit 1-little
Tamarind Tamarindus indica Honey bees (incl. Apis dorsata) fruit 1-little
Cocoa Theobroma cacao Midges 4-essential tropical
Clover (not all species) Trifolium spp. Honey bees, Bumblebees, Solitary bees seed 1 temperate
White clover Trifolium alba Honey bees, Bumblebees, Solitary bees seed 1 temperate
Alsike clover Trifolium hybridum L. Honey bees, Bumblebees, Solitary bees seed 1 temperate
Crimson clover Trifolium incarnatum Honey bees, Bumblebees, Solitary bees seed 1
Red clover Trifolium pratense Honey bees, Bumblebees, Solitary bees seed 1 temperate
Arrowleaf clover Trifolium vesiculosum Savi Honey bees, Bumblebees, Solitary bees seed 1 temperate
Blueberry Vaccinium spp. Alfalfa leafcutter bees, Southeastern blueberry bee, Bumblebees (Bombus impatiens), Solitary bees (Anthophora pilipes, Colletes spp., Osmia ribifloris, Osmia lignaria), Honey bees fruit 3-great 3-4 temperate
Cranberry Vaccinium oxycoccus, Vaccinium macrocarpon Bumblebees (Bombus affinis), Solitary bees (Megachile addenda, Alfalfa leafcutter bees), Honey bees fruit 3 temperate
Broad bean Vicia faba Honey bees, Bumblebees, Solitary bees seed 2-modest
Vetch Vicia spp. Honey bees, Bumblebees, Solitary bees seed temperate
Cowpea, Black-eyed pea, Blackeye bean Vigna unguiculata Honey bees, Bumblebees, Solitary bees seed 1-little
Karite Vitellaria paradoxa Honey bees nut 2-modest temperate
Tomato Solanum lycopersicum Bumblebees, Solitary bees (Halictus spp.) fruit temperate, tropical
Grape Vitis spp. Honey bees, Solitary bees, Flies fruit 0-no increase temperate
Jujube Zizyphus jujuba Honey bees, Solitary bees, Flies, Beetles, Wasps fruit 2-modest

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Kislev ME, Hartmann A, Bar-Yosef O (2 June 2006). "Early domesticated fig in the Jordan Valley". Science 312 (5778): 1372–1374. doi:10.1126/science.1125910. PMID 16741119. 
  2. ^ The Calimyrna Fig & Its Pollinator Wasp Wayne's word on-line text book of Natural history
  • POLLINATION Mid-Atlantic Apicultural Research and Extension Consortium, MAAREC Publication 5.2; February 2000
  • Pollination and Bee Plants, Excerpted from Beekeeper's Handbook, Sammataro/Avitabile ©1998.

Further reading[edit]