I've been experimenting with native trees that have flowers that the bees will like. I've written before about manukas, but there are others that will round out the season. So these are the ones that I have planted so far.
Towai, weinmannia silvicola - will grow into a biggish tree. Flowers in spring.
Rewarewa, knightia excelsia, a forest giant, flowers in spring.
A Pittosporum Tenuifolium, that ubiquitous hedge plant from a while back, a medium sized tree, flowers from October - November. Makes a good wind break too.
And a Five finger, pseudopanax arboreus, has big leaves with 5 leaf bits per stem (surprise!), also a wind break type. Flowers June to August, so only for those hardy bees still out in the north.
A different type of pittosporum - tawhirikaro, quite small.
And this, which is hard to see because it has tiny leaves, but it is a Putaputaweta, carpodetus serratus, also a medium sized tree, flowers spring to summer.
Ngaio, Myoporum laetum, 5m high.
Lacebark, Hoheria populnea, 5m high, flowers in autumn.
Lemonwood, Tarata, pittosporum eugenioides, flowers in spring, grows tall. There are several types of trees called Lemonwood, so check for the right one.
Kowhai, sophora tetraptera, spring flowering.
Pohutukawa, the bees were all over this, flowers bang on Christmas (well, my one does).
I've also planted a whole lot of hebes, because I like them. Different types flower at different times, which is a bonus. Small and shrubby.
All these trees have flowers that the birds and bees enjoy. And they all grow quickly, or quickly-ish, for trees. I also had a native fuscia, but it died (not enough watering), but I think would do well too. I can't report back on whether they work yet though, they aren't big enough to flower.
For more information sign up to collect your free downloadable Pictorial Step-by-Step Guide to Growing Manuka Trees from Seeds. Free! And there is lots more information on Business of Bees including a Manuka Farm Consulting Service which also covers other trees (if you live in NZ)