Barefoot beekeeping

‘The keeping of bees is like the direction of sunbeams’ , Henry David Thoreau.  Something I read this morning from an inspiring book called ‘The Barefoot Beekeeper’ , a book I have wanted to absorb for awhile.  Finally beekeeping makes sense to me.  A friend likened the type of hive with removable frames (national, WBC)  like beekeeping in a block of flats. I’m discovering Top Bar hives again, and sustainable bee keeping that I first read about in a Permaculture magazine and then when we stayed at Embercombe on one of their ‘Friends working weekends’ (we celebrated the solstice with them which moved both myself, D’Arcy and Liz, a friend looking for land in the southwest to establish a permaculture holding). Observing, not disturbing, the bees lies at the heart of it, which is something I’m learning with Hugo (our son who’s 5 weeks old now), needing to observe his little ways and meet is needs as a new mum. This reminds me of the first permaculture principle of ‘Observe and Interact’ ( If anyone has any experience of Top Bar hives, I’d love to hear about it. I will gather wood, a little time and make myself a hive, to sit alongside my National and then I can observe which bees are happiest!

Principle 1: Observe and interact. Proverb: Beauty is in the eye of the beholder


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