Saturday, August 11, 2007

Game Plan Revisited

One of the reasons I created this blog was to brainstorm on how I might begin beekeeping in a way consistent with a sustainable lifestyle. As I research and dialogue with other beekeepers on the internet and in my real life, I have to be willing to change my direction or plans. A good plan is always flexible, adapted to new knowledge about your environment and yourself. For this reason, I am thinking about changing my earlier "game plan".

Gerry at "Global Swarming" suggested a day or so ago that I consider starting out with a Top Bar Hive. I had been reluctant to do this since I had assumed that TBHs were a difficult way to begin beekeeping . But I considered what Gerry told me and about her experiences and am seriously reconsidering the direction I'm going.

I read Phil Chandler's The Barefoot Beekeeper last night and it makes a strong argument for beginning with TBHs for someone in my situation. Firstly, I can't lift alot of weight anymore (Doctor's orders) and that would not be as necessary with a top bar hive. Secondly, a beekeeper using a top bar hive interferes in the life of the colony much less and allows the bees much more leeway to create comb to their own specification and needs. I see this as a key to sustainability. I believe that the bees know best. Lastly, I am fortunate to have a life partner who has also worked as a carpenter who can easily make a hive from Chandler's plans, so my initial costs will be much less. One problem with TBHs, though, is that I really will have no support locally.

So where do I go from here?

1 comment:

Gerry Gomez Pearlberg said...

This is very exciting news! The wonderful thing is that the web is full of great mentors—esp. the org beek list. They've held my hand every step of the way. I will be eager to hear of your adventures next spring!