It seems that every other turning off the A12 on the way to my apiary in coastal Suffolk is called Sandy Lane. But when you hear people in Barbados talking about Sandy Lane, you know that it only means one place: the immaculate Sandy Lane property in St James’s parish, Barbados.
On a previous visit to Barbados, I had met Ben The Bajan Beekeeper. Following my blog post, I received an invitation from one of Ben’s fellow beekeepers, Bret Tujela, to visit his Bajan Bees when I was next on the island.
Bret responded enthusiastically when I let him know that the entire Apis beekeeping family would be holidaying in Barbados. He was keen for us to see his bees as soon as we got off the plane. That was before we had hired a car, so we postponed the invitation. That was to prove fateful.
Maff spotted the sign, on the outskirts of Bridgetown, Barbados: “Sawh’s Bee Hiving Enterprise – we specialize in bee hive removal. 100% pure Honey. 100% pure Bajan.“
Irresistible. I called the number. After a long, almost too long ring, the phone was answered by a woman’s voice. A kind, busy, slightly singing intonation. I explained that I was a beekeeper from London and that I’d like to buy some genuine Bajan honey. “Certainly”, the lady replied: “where are you staying on the island? I’ll bring some to you.”
We’re off to the Bee Garden Party at Marlborough House, London from 6pm on 1st July 2015.
My Apis Bee Consultancy will be auctioning a full apiary site survey – a new and unique service, aimed at hotels and restaurants – in aid of Bees For Development.
Martha Kearney will host the event and Bill Turnbull will run the Auction. Take a look at the goodies going under the hammer.
Please come along and support this extremely worthy cause.
It’s the summer solstice. Today is the longest day of the year with 16 hours, 38 minutes and 19 seconds of daylight in London. It’s also the day when Queen bees hit their peak daily laying rate of over 2,000 eggs a day. So it’s a good time of year to consider the dark side of beekeeping: the swarm.
A swarm of bees can be a nuisance and a distraction from everyday human activity, yet swarming is simply the way that honeybee colonies reproduce. Bees swarm in the Spring and Summer, when the colony is strong enough to divide, which is when people tend to be out and about more. Given the pressure on bees’ numbers in the U.K., this is a good thing. Yet the first time you see a swarm of bees, it’s bound to be an unnerving experience. Continue reading “Swarm”
In life, as in beekeeping, when you collaborate with talented people, good things happen.
When Hung (pronounced “Hoong”) Quach approached me to propose an article about the Bermondsey Street Bees‘ rooftop apiary, in the “Locality” section of her Jet and Indigo blog, I was delighted to accept. I had been especially impressed with the crispness and clarity of her photographs (and her food images in particular) and Hung’s bee photography certainly did not disappoint! Continue reading “In The Apiary : Mid June : Jet and Indigo”