Bee hotel

No Glowforge was harmed or used in the making of this bee hotel.

I’ve been meaning to make one of these for a while. Had a visit with my mom for the first time in 3 months today, so decided on Friday I would make one for her (and now will make one for us next weekend).

Everything is scrap crap found in my shed or yard.

Tools used: 10" miter saw, pneumatic finish nailer (i could have used a hammer, but i hadn’t turned on the compressor in a while, and, you know… NAIL GUN!), a friend’s drill press, metal clippers, and a pair of scissors, and a staple gun.

materials: a piece of old, unfinished stair tread (we think it might be some kind of cedar?), a really old board that was a shelf on a cinder block shelving unit in the metal shed that was behind our house when we bought it 20 years ago, a downed log i found in the yard that wasn’t rotten (maybe plum tree?). a big piece of bamboo that was in the neighbor’s yard waste, a bunch of small bamboo pieces from an old, broken, and unused bamboo fence screen, some wire screening that was rolled up behind the shed years ago, and some string.

take all that, mix and match some tools and some materials, figure out how to take an 8" deep board and cut it down to be 5" x 10" pieces with a 10" miter saw, feel sad that you really only needed to put in about 16 finish nails, but you weren’t mentally done with the power tool, and you end up with one happy Mom, whose entire yard is pretty much a pollinator garden (we ate outside today and there were bumble bees flying across our table throughout the meal and afterward, which meant i had to keep a good handle on Dany who things all flying bugs are targets and she’s an anti-aircraft missile). so she’s thrilled and will be putting this up somewhere this week.

happy with how this turned out. looking forward to taking the other shelf from that old shed (how it had two matching shelves of a nice 3/4" hardwood i don’t understand) and building one for our yard next weekend.


Sorry to be ignorant, but what does it do?

I’ve followed bee keeping for a few years and never seen anything like this?

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They are for a type of solo bee called a leaf cutter bee depending on where you live.


Well, that’s my new fact of the day! Thanks!


There are any number of solo bees that it can attract.

This is the site I followed for basics as I made it (although I read others too).


That looks very cool and rustic at the same time. Your mom and the bees must be happy!


What a cool project! I’d never heard of bee hotels before. What I like about it is that it is decorative as well as practical.


Great project! I’ve been meaning to make one of these to encourage the carpenter bees away from my deck boards.


I had quite a problem a while back with carpenter bees that look like bumble bees but make nests in any wood that won’t get rained on. They love soffits and wood benches especially. They would love your project also but I don’t think they would confine themselves to it. My carpenter bees looked closer to bumble bees than the photo shows

I don’t know the ecology where you are, so maybe it is different, but that was my first reaction to it. A slice would make an interesting wall hanging however.

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Very cool!


We have mason bees that live in those kind of designs.

But with carpenter bees trying to eat my house I’m tasked by the wife to eliminate them from around the house rather than encourage others to live here. We just had to get a fair amount of siding & soffits replaced when we had the house repainted due to their drilling.


it could be that creating a place for them other than your house, and moving it further away from your house (like a far away fence or on a post far away) might encourage them to stay away from your house. the positives for them with a hotel is they don’t have to actually dig, the wood holes are there.

i have no idea if that’s true, but it makes sense in my head.


As far as I can tell at least one group cuts for one breeding season only, and cuts new each time. I am not that expert, just observation of my sponge bench.


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