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Hello all. Hello all. *waves* I need to throw an idea out, and see if it's looney tunes or not, and hopefully, this is the right forum for it. It involves bees and beekeeping so I think this is a good place...
My father lives in Ellsworth Me. He has a small acreage with lots of stuff that blooms at various times of the year: Blackberries, wild strawberries, apples, plums, chokecherries, etc. The plot is about 6 acres, and is near forest and gardens and such.
Unfortunately, like many other places in the lands, the fruit is somewhat less than perfectly bountiful. He suspects that this is at least partially because there are no bees to be found anywhere on the land. (Yes that phrase before was the understatement of the century.). We were talking about it the other day and he commented that he would love to have a beehive out in the middle of the field or somewhere appropriate, to help fertilize everything. Of course, he's 90 years old so he would not be able to do a lot to care for it, but if someone wanted a place to keep some bees, then he would be happy to offer some space.
Now, I don't even know if this is something that should be offered, but every time I've thrown off the wall ideas out here on DG, someone either jumped in happily, or they explained why it was silly so that I understood the issues. So, therefore, I am asking again: Is this something that would be possible - the lending of land so that someone who wants to keep some bees could keep them in an area where they would be sure to get food?
If it helps at all, our land has been pretty organic for halfway into forever. Dad is getting more and more into the concept of living with the land and would do whatever he could to protect the hives - although I'm not sure how that would work.
Anyway, if this isn't too crazy, let me know, and I'll PM you or something so that I can get you in touch with my father. Or not. If it's crazed, please let me know why so I can learn.
Either way, thank you for letting me ask, and for any help you may offer.
It is a wonderful Idea. We started with just one hive three years ago. Now I have three thriving hives and absolutly bountiful gardens. Bees are so easy to keep on a small scale and the honey we have gotten is unsurpassed! Go for it!
It's been a while since I hopped on Davesgarden, but since then, I had gotten into Beekeeping. I would imagine that Beekeepers would be delighted that someone is asking about placement of bees. I live in the Harrisburg, PA area and run a small operation where I am always expanding. Don't be surprised that a beek would want to place a minimum of 5 hives if just to pay for the gas/upkeep/transportation to get there. Also, the beek would need to be able to drive to the location of the placement of the hives for beekeeping management functions.
I have posted a link to this thread onto a different forum (Beesource.com). Hopefully, you will get some bites from some Maine Beekeepers.
P.S. Another possibility to locate Maine Beekeepers is to place an ad on Craigslist.com.
Well, I want to thank everyone that responded! I put in a query with the Maine Beekeepers Association and received information about someone that might want to do it, very shortly afterwards. Now to overcome my shyness and call them to let them know what I am asking.
From the sound of things, I wish I did not live in the city now. I would love to share land for hives if I had the land to share!
I have a small yard, but a large garden (does that make sense?) and I loan out a spot for a local beekeeper. The arrangement is great for me - pollination for my fruit trees, veg garden and blueberries - and great for the bees - they get the pollen and nectar. This one particular hive yielded some 40lbs. of honey and has grown so large it will most likely have to be split in the spring before the bees decide to swarm. You can do bees in a small lot as long as your town allows it and you have the patience.
The beekeeper himself does not have any land of his own to put the beehives on, so he has called local farmers and put an inquiry on craigslist to look for interested parties...
Does this help at all?