Wow, these critters move fast! This morning I checked in on my greenhouse, watered my plants and left the door open. This afternoon I went back to check on them and my one Rajah chilli looked like someone had taken a hole punch to the leaves. While I was standing inside the greenhouse, various bees were flying in and out. I noticed a leafcutter bee (small with black and white/grey stripes) crawling into one of the flowers on the affected plant.
I thought I'd share the photos in case any new garderners experience similar damage and need help identifying it.
The bee tends to quit cutting when it hits a vein on the leaf. They use the cut pieces to line their nesting holes.
They are harmless to plants and are excellent pollinators. The round cuts disturb some people, but I actually think it's quite beautiful!
I am delighted to have so many bees in my garden. I am considering building a bee hotel to host even more.