Home Beekeeping for Beginners

Bees on HoneycombBeekeeping at home is something that you can totally do, but before you jump in with both feet it is a good idea to educate yourself as much as you can first on the topic. There are a lot of different things to learn and different scenarios that you should be prepared to handle. Learning all that you can before you start is a good idea so that you can avoid too many painful stings, wasting of the honey, and even losing the hive to mismanagement.

There are books and websites like this one from where you can learn and there are also plenty of videos online about the topic that can help you get the best start. There are even groups and clubs you can join and classes that you can take, both online and in your community.
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5 Ways to Help the Bees Without Keeping Hives in Your Backyard

5 Ways You Can Help the Bee Population Without Keeping Hives in Your BackyardWith the bee population struggling in many places, every little bit helps and you can make a difference in your own backyard. Maybe you’re not ready for the time commitment of keeping a full hive, but you still want to help the bee population thrive and even enjoy the benefits to your garden at the same time. Sound like you? Let’s look at a few ways you can help the bees on their journey without maintaining beehives in your backyard.

Grow Some Flowers

We’re all so busy in our day to day lives that we often forget the simplest step to help our pollinating friends. Just planting blooming things in your yard, garden, window boxes and small pots you’ll be helping the ecosystem overall. You’ll have pretty blooms to look at, the bees will have places to forage, your neighbors might be jealous of your beautiful landscape and inspired to plant their own as well – it’s just a win all around.

If you want to keep all the pollinators happy, plant nectar rich wildflowers and rotate varieties that will grow at different times throughout the season. I also like to sprinkle a little milkweed in the corners of my garden beds for the butterfly larvae feed on. So far it seems to be helping in my little corner of the neighborhood, every year over the last three years we have seen an increase in our butterfly population.

Water and Rest Stations

A bee out foraging will fly in a radius of 2 to 6 miles around it’s hive area in search of nectar sources. That’s a lot of exercise in a day. You wouldn’t want to go on a 6 mile walk or jog without being properly hydrated.

Hydration is equally important for our flying friends, especially during heat and drought situations. In populated areas fresh water sources for the bees and other insects can be difficult to find. Sure, there’s the occasional bird bath, but there are no streams or springs for them to visit.

Setting up a rest station for our pollinating friends can simple and easy to do. Just a shallow bowl with some rocks and water where they can land to take a break and have a drink is all you need. Ideally, leave this dish near a flower box or next to the garden so it’s on their path and easy for them to find.

Bee Houses

Sure, right now the bees need our help to thrive and grow their numbers again, but they’re also very capable of taking care of themselves in most situations without our interference.

Just because you’re not ready to keep full hives doesn’t mean the bees can’t live in your yard. Set up a bee hotel of sorts in a tree on your property and before you know it you’ll have a nice little population flying by on their own. Some of these bee houses and insect hotels are quite decorative, too.

It doesn’t get much easier, just hang one in a tree and you’re done. All the benefits of bees in your garden without the hard work and the smokers. The bees might bless your garden beds a little extra this year if you have a bee house and one of those resting water dishes nearby.


Don’t Use Chemicals and Pesticides

If you are growing things in your yard of flower boxes, just say no to pesticides and chemical treatments.

If your plants need a little boost or are being eaten by unfriendly insects there are organic options available that are quite effective and actually cost much less than those rotten chemicals.

Fertilize with compost. Make friends with diatomaceous earth.

Take things an additional step further and just say no to those who use them. Be mindful of where you buy your produce and support those who have ethical and sustainable farming practices. Of course, shop local whenever possible.

Adopt a Local Hive

If beekeeping is allowed where you live, chances are someone out there is doing it. Some locations even have active “Adopt-a-Hive” programs. Find a local hive keeper and reach out to see how you can help, whether it be by volunteering time, offering donations, or just placing an order for some honey with them.

Additionally, stay educated and get involved where you can. Be aware of local ordinances, support local farmers and see if there are any beekeepers in your area that you can support by purchasing honey and other goods.

Storing Your Fresh Cut Herbs

storing fresh cut herbs

You want to prune and harvest regularly so that your plants continue to grow and provide fresh herbs to use, but you need to store those someplace. You have a few choices available and what you decide may depend on which herb you’re storing and how … [Continue reading]

3 Reasons to Include Lavender in Your Garden

good reasons to include lavender in your garden

Lavender is often overlooked when it comes time to do the planting and management of your home flower and herb gardens. It’s relatively easy to grow and has lots of uses around the house, aside from just looking pretty and smelling nice, though it … [Continue reading]

5 Beginner Herb Gardening Mistakes and Tips to Avoid Them

Beginner Herb Gardening Mistakes and Tips to Avoid Them

While herb gardens are a little easier and more relaxed than other gardening types, there are still some things you’ll want to stay on top when tending to the plants. If you avoid these common herb gardening mistakes you’ll have longer plant life, … [Continue reading]

Herb Gardening for Beginners: The Best Tools

herb gardening for beginners: the best tools

One of the nicest things about herb gardening is that you don’t really need a lot of tools and supplies, just a few basics. It’s perfect for beginner gardeners or for those who have minimal space available for storage. Aside from your plants and … [Continue reading]

Noodlehead Flexible Garden Sprinkler

Noodlehead Flexible Garden Sprinkler

One of the most tedious tasks of having a garden is watering it especially when you have a big one. We have tried a lot of different sprinklers in the past to make watering easier. However, we have always found that there are parts of the garden … [Continue reading]