How To Become A DIY Beekeeper
Urban beekeeping is gaining quite a bit of popularity as the honeybee becomes known for its beneficial help to humans and the environment we live in. In fact, there are currently about 212,000 beekeepers in the United States. With the ability to turn your garden into a beautiful space due to the flowers that can bloom and flourish with the help of the pollinating bees do, beekeeping is a great way to engage in a sustainable outdoor activity. Plus, you’ll probably look really cool in the beekeeping outfit.
The basics of getting into beekeeping
Don’t worry if you don’t have any experience around bees. Really, who does? If you can garden, you can be a beekeeper. First, you will want to think about where you will keep your bees. Check into your neighborhood or city’s local zoning laws regarding beekeeping to make sure you aren’t overstepping any legal boundaries and also check with your neighbors to give them a heads up and ensure nobody is allergic to bees. About a half an acre of land can support one or two colonies, so make sure you’ve got enough space to let these bees live their lives and do their work.
Buying the right beekeeping equipment
Before even getting a hive, you will want to purchase or DIY a hive stand. These are really easy to DIY as they are typically made of two by fours and cement blocks. Your hive should sit about 18 inches off the ground to protect them from prying animals. Now, you can build a hive. In modern day beekeeping, people typically use one of three types of beehives, and it will be important to construct yours based on the needs of your bees. Honey will be at the top with pollen surrounding the brood nest and the brood near the bottom.
Wearing the right protective gear
This is a step you will definitely not want to skip, as you might find yourself a bit nervous the first time you have bees swarming all around you. A simple hat and veil combo is what many beekeepers use, but a full bee suit with gloves is suggested if you live in an area with a colder climate or will be working with a hive that is particularly active. On this point, it is important to note that when purchasing your bees from a breeder, you should ask them about docile bees. Of the three most common types of bees used for beekeeping, Italian bees are the most docile, gentle and productive.
The benefits of backyard beekeeping
Seeing as three out of four food producing crops in the country depend in some part on the work of pollinators, they are pretty important to our global ecosystem as well as the one found in your garden. Bees work hard to pollinate plants that provide food to humans and wild animals while also eating insects that can damage your garden’s health. Taking up backyard beekeeping is a great way to engage in a new hobby while also helping the environment, and that sounds like a win-win for everybody.
Content writer: Ali Norris