AirBeeNBeeFood is not enough, pollinators also need a shelter to live and nest. Shelter for the wild cousinsAs pollinators the wild cousins of the honeybee provide a large contribution to the diversity in your garden. They are a lot more peaceful then their relatives, too – many of them do not even have a stinger. That’s why they are the best inhabitants for your balcony and garden. So get active and create a bee home!In order to let the tenants feel really comfortable, there are of course a few requirements to pay attention to:There should be forage crops in the vicinity fitting the lifecycle of the promoted speciesAdequate building material like clay, soil and deadwood is to be used.The location should be sunny, dry and southward.Constuctions should be deep-seated.To prevent injuries of the inhabitants cut edges should be polished with sandpaper e.g. Guesthouses for other helpersBees are not the only insects needing a place to live. There are a lot more beneficials like ladybirds and butterflies that rely on a safe home. As a reward they keep your garden healthy and thriving. Ladybirds for example are plant protectors as they are living on aphids. Butterflies on the other hand are pollinators just like bees and enable your plants to grow fruits and seeds. Help them, too, in finding a place to live. Advice concerning your construction materialsWood matured and untreatedpreferably hardwooddrill across the grain with a distance of 1 – 2 cmdrill holes preferably of a width between 3 and 9 mmthe depth of the drilling should be 10x the widthSoildry and sandyloosely overgrownHollow stems like bamboo and reeduse undamaged stemsreed should be cut with secateurs, bamboo with a fine sawpay attention to the joints of the stems which are closed at these points; put the joints always at the end of the stemHint: If the stem doesn’t have a naturally closed end, it can be sealed with cotton, clay or a small wooden plate.Deadwoodstored in a sunny and dry placeoffered verticallyConstruction manual for accommodationsWe have gathered some instructions for nesting aids fitting different pollinators and beneficials:the classic hotel for the wild beesthe royal residence for the bumblebeethe small sandarium for the diggerthe simple solution for the stem-loving architectthe accomodation for the butterflythe mansion for the ladybug Maintenance of the nesting siteOn average nesting sites last for three to four years and should be renewed after that to make sure that the next residents still feel comfortable. A yearly check-up can make that it last even longer. This is necessary because weather conditions and also birds can cause damages and make nesting for pollinators and beneficals impossible. Here we list some advice for the maintainance of your nesting sites:Wooden nesting aidsIf the openings of drilled holes are not fully closed or their seals are broken, they can be emptied and cleaned with a screwdriver or the material can be completely renewed.If most of the holes are still sealed, there is nothing to be done.StemsStiff stems (e.g. bamboo) can be cleaned with a screwdriver.Soft stems should be replaced when they start to fray out.Clay nesting aidsA brick trowel can be used to renew pieces that have been fallen out of the hotel.In general these kind of nesting aids have the longest life time.