How can I help?

You don’t have to be a beekeeper to help honeybees! Potentially your garden can provide everything they need to live – nectar, pollen, propolis and water. Find out what they like and why, in this fascinating book all about the synergy between honeybee and plant.

Why help bees?

Bees have been struggling. In the last 30 years the number of hives in the UK fell by more than half and wild honeybees are thought to have been close to extinction. Numbers of many wild bumblebee and solitary bee species have declined alarmingly too. By creating a forage-rich, chemical-free environment for bees we can all play a part in helping return these noble and fascinating insects to health.


Winter bees

Winter trees I realise I’ve come a long way when I think back to how I used to worry and fret about how the bees were doing in the depths of winter.  When there’s no movement around the hive at all because the temperature, even in the middle of a sunny day, is too low… Read more »

When is a bee not a bee?

When is a bee not a bee?  When it’s a fly, a hoverfly.  This mimic might look like a honey bee but something’s not quite right, it is too shiny and it hovers.  I thought it would be a simple case of identifying which hoverfly but it turns out there are quite a few hoverflies… Read more »

New bee hive design

The James Dyson award challenges new designers to come up with solutions to existing problems. This innovative bee hive design has taken natural beekeeping principles on board, as the designer puts it: “Helping reestablish a connection between humans and honeybees based on more than just honey.” I like the material, cork, the shape and the… Read more »

The in-hive pharmacy

I’ve written before on the virtues of leaving your honey bees to over winter on their own honey stores rather than feeding them sugar and now there is mounting scientific evidence to support the view. Recent studies by a team from Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenburg, Germany¹ found that nurse bees select different honey according to… Read more »

A new visitor on oil seed rape

Wandering through a field of rape the other day I was expecting to see lots of honey bees.  It was a bit windy and chilly but the sun was out.  However I saw not a single bee just a veil of  black flies sliding up and down invisible poles, not unlike Mayflies.  I had never… Read more »