Monday, October 24, 2011

Wouldn't it Bee Nice?

You know I love bees, right?

bee

I've been obsessed with keeping honeybees for a few years now...but not obsessed enough to do anything about it. There's a lot of (conflicting!) information about beekeeping online...it's completely overwhelming.

I'd just about given up the idea when Ian found a short course taught through the University of Minnesota: "Beekeeping in Northern Climates". I couldn't beelieve our luck! (There's lots of puns in beekeeping, just so you know).

Last weekend, Ian and I spent two days at the Bell Museum of Natural History learning all about honeybees and beekeeping. If anyone is interested in keeping bees in northern states, I highly recommend this class. It was well worth the time and tuition. We spent two full days learning how to start and manage a colony using the U of M's very own beekeeping method.

There are so many interesting things about honeybees, my head is spinning. Did you know one colony of bees can produce 300 lbs. of honey in just one short Minnesota summer?! They're truly amazing little creatures.



Ever since the class, my head has been buzzing with inspiration. I love the idea of caring for bees, of harvesting and bottling and giving away honey (I don't like honey...I just like bees). I want to make beeswax candles and honey soap. I want to build and paint hive boxes...not boring white but beautiful aquas and greens. I want to buy a field of wildflowers and grow fruit trees, all pollinated by our very own bees. And I want to make fruit preserves and quilt and check on the bees. All day, every day.

It all makes going to my "real" job rather tiresome. Truly: I'd rather be covered in bees than go to my "real" job.



So, I want to know, are any of you beekeepers? Any Minnesota beekeepers? Do you like honey? Are you sure you don't actually think it's gross? Because I hear some people think it's gross...