Sunday, September 13, 2009

I'm Thinking About Keeping Bees

I've been reading this book by Sue Hubbell, and I'm feeling so inspired. Sue describes being a beekeeper in such a romantic, yet rural way, that you really can't help thinking about it yourself.

Bees have been a source of fascination for thousands of years. In every culture, they have been viewed with respect and honor. And, even though bees have been studied for so many years, there are still so many questions yet to be answered.

Sue describes how a bee sees flowers. For example, nearly all early spring flowers are white. To a bee's eye, white glows an iridescent blue. She also explains that bees never pollinate red flowers, they are always pollinated by hummingbirds, or butterflies of something else.
The pollination work of Bees is often undervalued. Lest we forget that nearly every fruit and vegetable that we eat was once pollinated by a bee in order to grow.
Sue describes how to join two hives. I think the method that she uses is a model for joining rival groups of all kinds: First, the beekeeper disposes the queen of the weaker group (I'm not sure this the part I'd like to emphasise in my metaphor.) Then, the beekeeper places the weaker hive on top of the strong hive with a sheet of newspaper in between the boxes in which they live. All bees HATE any kind of foreign matter/dirt in their hives. So, both hives will work at removing the newspaper, the weak group will work from the top, the strong group will work from the bottom. By the time the groups meet, they have become united through their work towards a common goal. Isn't this a beautiful metaphor for how many different groups could set aside hate and become partners?


randee said...

i received the most beautiful necklace in the mail saturday. thank you so much. i'll be telling everyone i know about your etsy store.

bees ARE fascinating. i had to learn to be at one with the bees when i started an herb garden. after years of being so afraid of bumblebees & honeybees, i could sit quietly & do my weeding, gathering, whatever. i didn't bother them & they didn't bother me. the bumblebees would get their wings so heavy & sticky from my lavender & lambs ear that they had to walk home. what a funny sight!

the book "the secret life of bees" was really interesting (except for the whole statue worship thingy).

we have a little vacation house in south carolina & we have a huge honeybee hive in a hole in a tree.

bee happy -

the treat girl said...

I just wish I had time to read....

marzipanmom said...

Put me first on your list of honey buyers!