Sadly, bees are facing challenges ranging from climate change, to habitat loss and harm from pesticides, which can mean that on a bad year a bee colony sometimes loses 15-20% of its population!
Back in the 1950’s a beekeeper could make a living from selling honey from just 30 hives. Now, 70 years on, a beekeeper needs to have 200 hives if he/she is to make a living from just selling honey! It’s because there is less forage for the bees to feed on as a result of changing farming methods, loosing hedgerows, meadows, woodlands and gardens.
So what can be done?
Although banning nasty pesticides, preserving wild habitats and restoring ecological agriculture are key, individuals can make a big difference by simply planting flowers that are essential for bee habitats. We’ve started planning to create a buzzilicious paradise in our back garden this winter, so that we are ready to plant just as soon as spring has sprung!
Here are a few of the best plants to help your bee neighbours thrive:
2. Blue Borage
4. Abelia (Bee Bush)
5. Pussy Willow
9. Monarda (Bee Balm)
They say there are over a million visits to flowers in a 224g jar of honey, with a bee visiting an average of 50 – 100 flowers on each of its foraging trips! This means that the combination of flowers that make up each jar of honey is so huge that it’s impossible to replicate – every jar of honey is unique 🐝🧡
Hive & Keeper are a UK based company that help small scale beekeepers make an income from their beekeeping hobby and small businesses. They go against the grain of large brands who typically like consistency of flavour in their products, and instead, celebrate the unique and different flavours that make individual hives so special.
The scale of some of the UK’s largest bee farms is so vast that they often sell their honey in bulk, combining all the honey from all their bees across thousands of hives and mixing them in large vats to sell to big commercial brands. Of course it’s still honey, but the unique flavours of each hive that went into the vat are lost. By knowing exactly from which beekeepers their honey comes from, Hive & Keeper are able to preserve these complex and wonderful flavours – all their honey comes straight from the flower, to the bee, to the hive, to you!
Looking for a last minute Christmas gift? Head on over to Hive & Keeper and discover their amazing range of honeys that are tailor sourced to be good on toast, porridge or in your tea! Use our discount code for 10% off: UKBEES