I’v been running my bee yard since 2010 and luckely enough to keep 10 to 15 hives close to my home in a sunny spot by the woods.
My aim is to bring the bee population into balance and I will intervene when necessary for the sake of the general good. Furthermore, I keep my bees according to Swiss organic standards. This means using high-quality organic feed, providing residue-free material for housing and encouraging natural breeding.
While we are enjoying warm summer days and sunny holidays, bees are busy stocking up on honey and preparing for survival through winter. Then along comes the honey thief – the beekeeper – who takes away the precious honey that the bees have worked so hard to collect!
We are allowed to harvest honey on average twice a year; the first harvest takes place at the end of May or beginning of June. The honey is packed full of energy and contains all the goodness of flowers from fruit trees and meadows, lending the honey a fresh and tasty flavour. The honey crystallises easily and after a few weeks, it will be firm enough to scoop with a spoon. The second harvest takes place at the end of July and this honey is the product of raspberry, blackberry, lime and chestnut flowers as well as hedge and garden plants. It has a mild, almost fruity flavour and remains runny.
Many people have approached me about my hobby, love our honey and would like to visit my little bee yard. Everyone is welcome to stop by.
Experience the wonder of bees close up. Leave the classroom behind for a bit and let’s get hands-on!
What role does the vital work of pollination that bees perform play in our lives? What is the meaning of biodiversity? Can we pet bees? We explore these and many more questions in my bee yard.
The more we directly explore the natural world, the greater our appreciation for the environment we live in becomes. Experiencing the world of bees offers us the opportunity to impart sustainable educational experiences in our children’s lives.
I would love to show you and your students our bees, located near the lake of Zurich.
On the continents of Asia, South and North America and here in Europe, bee colonies are coming under increasing threat throughout the world. It is a concern we must take seriously.
If we start small and take care of pasture plants for bees – bearing in mind that not every blossom provides nectar or pollen – and ensure that nectar and pollen is available in all seasons and is as diverse as possible, that would already be a major step forward. If we look after our home gardens without chemical fertilizers, we will create the best conditions for bees.
Answers to many of these questions are of course available online. I recommend the websites Pro Natura and Die Honigmacher (only available in German) as well as the film More than Honey by Markus Imhoof.