BCBA meeting June 8 to discuss extracting and marketing honey


Getting your honey of the hive — how does that happen? And then what do you do with all that golden stuff​? Those will be the questions we will be tackling at the next meeting of the Blount County Beekeepers Association. One of our members, Coley O’Dell, will talk about harvesting and marketing honey, and anotherContinue reading “BCBA meeting June 8 to discuss extracting and marketing honey”

Winter for the beekeeper: It’s time to think about spring, summer


With winter approaching (in some places it’s already here), the beekeeper has two jobs: Make sure the bees in your hives have plenty of food. Think about about what’s going to happen in your apiary in the spring and summer. Neither of these jobs involves a lot of work at this point, but they shouldn’tContinue reading “Winter for the beekeeper: It’s time to think about spring, summer”

BCBA to hold annual Christmas party on Dec. 8


The annual Blount County Beekeepers Association Christmas Party will be on Dec. 8 at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church on Sandy Springs Road. The time is 6:30 p.m. We have special entertainment planned for this year: Off Kilter, a musical ensemble from Maryville College. This group gets rave reviews wherever it performs, and the students should provideContinue reading “BCBA to hold annual Christmas party on Dec. 8”

Bittman’s rules for eating – there are only two


Bittman’s at it again. Mark Bittman, a food writer for the New York Times, wants to change the way you eat. He wants to change the entire food system, too. The way we produce, distribute and consume food. But that’s impossible, so he’s having to content himself with telling us how we should eat, whatContinue reading “Bittman’s rules for eating – there are only two”

Casting swarms – it’s what bees do


What is the purpose of a colony of bees? Pollination? Wrong. Bees do this by accident. They don’t realize how much they’re helping humans and wouldn’t care if they did. Making honey? Wrong. Bees make honey because this is a stable food source. The fact that humans like honey is again irrelevant to the bees.Continue reading “Casting swarms – it’s what bees do”

Bee boxes: one size can fit all


When I was exploring getting into beekeeping, I was standing in the barn of a friend who had kept bees for more than 30 years. The barn was full of “bee equipment,” and my friend was trying to explain some of it to me. I remember one thing he said. “If I had to startContinue reading “Bee boxes: one size can fit all”

October BCBA meeting to feature auction for scholarships, grants


The annual auction will be the main event for the October meeting of the Blount County Beekeepers Association. The meeting, which will be on Monday, October 13, at 6:30 p.m. in the Blount County Library. The money from the auction goes to support the grants the BCBA gives to those who want to begin beekeepingContinue reading “October BCBA meeting to feature auction for scholarships, grants”

The joys of buckwheat, part 4: What Langstroth had to say


Lorenzo Langstroth, father of modern beekeeping, recognized the value of buckwheat to his honeybees. Buckwheat furnishes an excellent Fall feed for bees. As those of you who follow this blog regularly will know, I am a huge advocate of growing buckwheat to supplement the natural diet for honeybees. (See the previous posts: here, here, andContinue reading “The joys of buckwheat, part 4: What Langstroth had to say”

Italian bees don’t necessarily come from Italy


This will be amusing to those who know something about beekeeping. The Washington Post has published a photo essay under the headline: How Italian honeybees in Main are helping to sustain our food supply. The photos are very good. They were shot by  Andrees Latif of Reuters. The story’s editor at the Post is Nicole Crowder, editorContinue reading “Italian bees don’t necessarily come from Italy”

BCBA members show off bees during Blount Farm Tour


More than 850 Blount County students and teachers saw first-hand what beekeeping is like during the Blount Farm Tour earlier this month. That exposure to bees came through the efforts of Blount County Beekeepers Association members Harlen Breeden, Pat Breeden, Darlene Parton and Charlie Parton. They were helped by UT grad student Heather Lowry, whoContinue reading “BCBA members show off bees during Blount Farm Tour”