For a beeline to your garden, try building your own hive. About 30% of the most common feral bees nest in wood tunnels, so entomologist Mace Vaughn suggests starting with a block of non-pressure-treated wood. Drill it full of holes that are 3/32 inch to 5/16 inch in diameter and about 5 inches deep.

The queen "basically fills those tunnels with girls," Vaughn says. "For a farmer or a gardener, you want to maximize your girl production because those are the ones that are foraging mostly for the pollen and nectar."

He says projects like this allow gardeners to understand these insects better and not be afraid of them. "Putting up a bee block and taking care of them helps you establish a relationship and know what these insects do," he says. "That begins to change people's perspective."

— Joe Robinson