Well, I should be honest, I do this through my husband. He decided (and I agreed), we should get bees. The kids eat a ton of honey and from what we have read, local honey is the best honey for allergies and what not as it’s local to your environment.
So off he went. About a year of reading online and finding out lots, and reading books. Talking to bee people (I’m sure they have a special name, I’ll call them bee people.
Hubby ordered his bees and built his own hives ‘because I can make it out of wood’ he said. And he did an awesome job, really.
And we got 2 swarms of bees. It was a little odd and not so comforting at first. We put them out on the far end of our property so they wouldn’t be in our space.
These little guys won’t give us honey until next year. Yup, next year. Because we have what hubby calls top bar hives, the first year you have to let the bees get established and have enough honey for their winter. Then, next year we can harvest honey for us. If we haravest this year, they could leave and worse, die during the winter.
And we should expect about 50 pounds of honey, per hive next year. Wow!
We have been feeding these bees sugar water like crazy. You have to do this at first until they have enough honey to feed themselves with their honey. So there is cost in doing this. We give each hive a quart jar of sugar water every 3-4 days (as it’s gotten hotter they require more, it was every 4 days).I think we spend about $150-$200 on the bees, not including the wood to make the hives. And the sugar water.
We are excited about what this offer. It also helps with our fruit tree and berry bush pollination. (you can sing circle of life if you want to about this).
Do the bees sting you might ask. Yes. If you step on them (which I did the first day while barefoot – so wear shoes). And don’t be near someone while they are suited up messing with the bees, my daughter was stung 3 times (we’ve ordered her, a suit now).
Do you have your own bees? Do you buy local honey? Do you cook with honey? I would love to hear how you use honey/wax in your life. We apparently will be honey bears soon. Please dont’ call me Pooh Bear. I’m the Queen Bee.