Bees

Over the weekend I went to a free bee keeping course. I really wanted bees before, now I REALLY want bees. They are such cool little creatures!

My aim is to have them by next Spring (one year away). If I miraculously won the lottery (certainly would be a miracle as I don’t buy tickets) I would get them tomorrow. They can be a little pricey to set up but once you have everything there is very little ongoing costs (so I am led to believe).

I love love love honey, I have honey nearly every day. I adore the flavour. It would certainly help in my low waste efforts if I would no longer need to purchase honey. I do buy it in glass jars that I reuse over and over again but there will come a point in time when I feel I have reached that mythical place of having ‘enough’ jars. So being able to get the honey from my back yard and store it in the jars that I already have would be amazing.

I need to put some more research into Winter flowering plants for the bees to get pollen from. I am not really a flower gardener at all so this will force me to broaden my horticultural repertoire. I am trying to plant more flowers every year.

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Last week I planted a heap of different types of sunflowers and cosmos. Then there was a mass invasion of earwigs. Yuck. They are really thankful for all the tender little plants that I put out specifically for them to dine on (or so they would have you believe!)

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Quite rude! You may wonder why there is ugly wire behind the plants. This is why…

IMG_3811The chickens can fit their heads between the pickets on the fence and feel that this just extends their hunting ground.

I have planted quite a few Queen Annes Lace, Zinnias, Buckwheat, Sunflowers, Cosmos, and Salvias. None of these flower in Winter.

I have no real plan for where I want everything to be planted. It all looks so miserable now, so much dirt on show as all the plants were trimmed back at the end of Autumn.  Once everything starts growing and flowering I will have a better idea of what space I have left to put flowers in.

IMG_3800This is my flower area. Quite an eye sore. It does look better when the plants are flowering and the apple has leaves. None of it can hide that massive white monstrosity that is a seat with arch. A massive miscommunication between my sister and myself. I plan to grow some sort of creeper over it. Not sure yet what it will be.

The bee man was quite passionate about bees, his knowledge was broad and his enthusiasm infectious. I have a couple of apple trees and a couple of pear trees, he assured me that I would have apples and pears coming out of my ears if I had bees. They pollinate every single flower! I hope to do a lot more research before I get them so that I feel like I could handle it if (when) they swarm.

Bees are so precious and I would be honoured to host them in my backyard. I am pretty excited about it even though it isn’t imminent. I will have to settle this Summer with luring them into my backyard. Bring on the flowers!

IMG_3802The first sweet pea variety has just started flowering. It smells sublime.

This gives me more joy than I can put into words, the pear tree is going to be first to come out of dormancy.

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