Grit Blogs > Haven Homesteaders for Grit

Honey Bee Helpers

LindsayThe idea behind Haven Homestead is that we want to be able to produce all (or at least 75%) of our own food. That includes wanting to make our own sugar. Since sugar cane and sugar beets don't grow “well” here and since processing sugar from those can be tricky, we have decided that we want to raise honey bees.

 

Warre Hive 

Honey bees are great! The do all the work of processing the sugar, we just have to harvest it. They not only provide their beekeepers with honey, but they also help to pollinate a huge number of the plants that we eat every day.

The sad part is that bees are under attack. As more and more people enter the gardening arena, pesticides and chemical fertilizers are becoming more common. Instead of planting vegetables in guilds that support a healthy ecosystem, new gardeners look for the “easy way” of getting rid of garden pests. The trouble is that when you use PESTICIDES you aren't just getting rid of the pests, you are also getting rid of the beneficial insects, like honey bees, that would actually help your garden be more productive.

Save Honey Bee http://thebeeshouse.blogspot.com/2012/11/save-honey-bee.html

In order to further our venture in food production and environmental rehabilitation, I have started taking courses to become a Master Beekeeper! I'm so excited!

If you are interested in becoming a beekeeper too, check out your local university's extension office, or with your state's beekeeping association. Bees are such an integral part of our agricultural system that you won't have to look far!

Photo Credits: The first one is a Warre Hive taken by me here at Haven Homestead! The second one is one I googled, since I don't have my own bees yet, and is courtesy of Bees Hive, a blogging site for anyone who loves bees.

nebraskadave
3/23/2014 6:56:37 AM

Lindsay, what a novel way to have a natural sweetener to use on the homestead. I never really thought of honey as a sugar but, duh, it can always be used as such. Bees are every where. I really don't have the desire to take care of bees but if I was to find some to take care of them, I would allow them to have hives on my garden property. ***** You are so correct about the modern gardeners and their chemicals. Most don't even take the time to check out what kind of bug is on their plants. They just assume it's bad and spray the killing mist on the plants. Fortunately, in my big garden (Terra Nova Gardens) a flock of wild turkeys take care of the bugs. In the two years that I've been developing the garden, I've not seen very many bugs. The turkeys scratch around in the mulch and keep the bug population under control for me. I love it when nature's plan works, don't you? ***** Have a great hone bee helpers day.


amanda
3/22/2014 7:41:02 AM

Very cool that you are venturing into bee keeping. My husband and I have tried bee keeping over the past three years with minimal success. I would be interested in the master bee keeping courses. Do you have any links that you could post? We hope to be getting three more hives in April. We are very excited!