Hello! Welcome to LIVE AT THE HIVE, the first in our on-going series of articles featuring beekeepers all over the planet!
What makes a beekeeper passionate about bees? Honey? Conservation? In this series you'll learn about what makes them buzz and hopefully it will inspire you to help your local beekeepers.
I'd like to introduce you to Andrea and her family, beekeepers in Central Ohio. I asked Andrea several questions about her craft, which is still new to her, and here's what she shared:
You've Got a Friend in Me
Andrea was introduced to beekeeping by one of her friends a little over five years ago. As a women's life coach by day, she wanted something meaningful to do outside of work and beekeeping seemed like a good fit!
Bigger Isn't Always Better
Andrea started out with three hives but reduced her farm to just one. "Keeping them alive in the winter is my biggest struggle" she told me, so shrinking the size to what was manageable for her was key.
In Central Ohio, winter is not all snowballs and snowmen. Warm spells are common, and it tricks the bees into waking up when they should be snoozing away. Boy are they in for a surprise when there's still snow on the ground and it's COLD!! Food is in short supply as they have only enough honey to get them through a normal winter, so Andrea creates a special treat for her flying friends made of sugar and water.
Giving Creates a Sweeter World
Andrea bottles her golden honey under the name "Blissfield Honey" and gives it to friends and family. She's excited to learn more about her new love of bees and beekeeping, and melting the wax is a project in progress.
Advice from a Beekeeper...
"It's one of the most fascinating things I have ever done" says Andrea, a lover of learning, "there will be plenty of failure and that is how you learn."
For new beekeepers, she shares to "stay calm" around your bees and "don't expect perfection." And so you can fully enjoy the experience of being around our fuzzy, buzzing friends, she also recommends you "be patient" while starting your journey.