Follow our progress running the nursery, watching wild bees, keeping honey bees and creating our own bee-haven in south Oxfordshire

The new apiary at Rosybee

Over the last couple of weeks we (mainly my husband Paul) have been getting our new apiary ready. Our bees currently reside in a field near our house owned by a local farmer but now that we have our own site and will be filling with masses of bee-food (flowers) we want to migrate them. Its fantastic to be able to put the hives wherever we want and create the ideal conditions:

  • South-east facing so the hives get the morning sun and encourage the bees out when the flowers have maximum nectar
  • Sheltered by mature trees to the north and west to give shelter
  • On the edge of our new orchard corner to provide some light shade when the (heritage) apple trees grow
  • A nice level area for us to work in and manage
We have laid down some membrane, with paving stones to provide a solid footing for each hive and wood chips on top to keep the grass down. This should produce a practical and low maintenance area.

We will have up to 6 hives - we dont really want more than that as we dont have time with all the other aspects of the business to run - and will initially stock some new hives with artificial swarms. Then at some stage we will be brave and move the original colonies.

With the new hives we have chosen to go for commercial brood boxes as this should reduce future swarming tendencies. They are cedar too; lovely and clean and posh bought from Paynes Bee Farm