Botanical sources of propolis: vital condition for the wellbeing of bees

Bees rely on plants for everything they need to support the life of their colony. As a result, the bee-plants relationship is mutually beneficial and complicated. The least studied aspect of this relationship is connected to the plant resin collection by bees to produce propolis, which is both a building material and a chemical defense against microorganisms and parasites. The secretion of antimicrobial material is widespread in the plant kingdom, however, in a particular geographic region, bees usually demonstrate preference for a very limited number of source plants. We are going to present the up-to-date knowledge on botanical sources of propolis, discussing the ways bees make their choice, the ways to identify the propolis bearing plants, the chemical differences between distinct propolis types, and the composition-bioactivity relationship. Knowledge of the botanical sources of propolis is essential with respect to the wellbeing and health of the bee colony.
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