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Keeping Bees and Making Honey is a stunning, comprehensive and attractive lifestyle guide to beekeeping packed with images, information, practical advice, useful resources and recipes. Whether you have a tiny balcony or acres of land; live in the middle of a city or in the countryside surrounded by flowers, you can keep bees. Keeping Bees and Making Honey caters for every situation, and covers everything you will need to consider before you set up your colony – including when and how to tell the neighbours!
'Understanding your bees' introduces you to the history of bees and humans, the anatomy of a honey bee, the variety of species that you are likely to encounter, the caste system within a colony of queen, worker and drone, and the birth and life cycle of bees. 'What to consider' suggests factors to consider before keeping bees, from the space where you will house your hives to children and pets. Learn about the variety of hives available and how they work, as well all the important things that you will need including protective clothing, a smoker and hive tool, as well as honey-harvesting equipment.
There are a variety of sources for purchasing your bees and 'Where and when to get your bees' will give you all the advice you need covering the nucleus, packaged bees, full colonies and tips on marking the queen. There are detailed sections on pollen and supers. 'Gardening for bees' will help you consider the best flowers to supply nectar and pollen to your bees whilst ensuring your garden looks great! It is probably the prospect of home-grown honey that entices most people to keep bees. 'All about honey' will show you how bees make honey, and how to harvest, jar and sell your honey. There is a whole chapter devoted to other bee products, from uses of beeswax; candles and cosmetics, to delicious recipes made with honey. Finally, 'Health and care' will ensure that your apiary stays clean and tidy, and your colony is pest free, strong and vigorous.
This updated and revised edition of Keeping Bees and Making Honey includes new material on bees as a superorganism, keeping bees in urban locations such as schools and at work, caring for bees during the winter, your second year as a bee keeper and more on bee health, varroa and colony collapse disorder. Environmentally there has never been a more important time to start beekeeping, nor is there a better antidote to the stresses of everyday life.
Keeping Bees and Making Honey is the ideal companion for you if you are planning to start keeping bees in order to contribute to their conservation and to enjoy the considerable benefits of this fascinating hobby.
- Understanding Bees
- What to Consider
- Housing your Bees
- Where & When to Get your Bees
- Getting your Bees Home
- Gardening for Bees
- All About Honey
- Bees in Winter
- The Second Year
- Bee Products
Alison Benjamin is a Guardian journalist. She writes on environmental issues and social affairs and currently edits The Guardian's environment website. Brian McCallum is a designer, builder and yachtsman. She and Brian - who now studies apiculture - have many hives in different locations across London.