Be For Bees
Isn't it funny
How a Bear likes honey?
Buzz! Buzz! Buzz!
I wonder why he does.
--A. A. Milne
My tired, clean, warm, cuddly dad read Winnie the Pooh and many other books to my younger brother and me when we were little. But when he read Pooh, and only Pooh, he often got so tickled he would laugh until he had to wipe his eyes with his pocket handkerchief. I never asked him, but I think Dad—small, a bit round, always interested in good food—may have identified a little bit with Pooh and the mishaps he brought on himself because he found honey irresistible. No wonder I have Pooh, honey, and Dad all stored in the same heartspace.
Dad kept bees when I was small, turning his most mysterious when he put on his bee suit and veil, whoofing his smoker toward the bees. I liked the honeycomb best of all.
After I left home Dad and Mother made an agreement with a beekeeper in town who needed places for hives. Bees buzzed everywhere among the huge plantings of flowers and flowering trees and shrubs, the two giant vegetable gardens and the clover that dotted the lawn. When Mr. Dishman came to harvest the honey, the share he left behind overwhelmed the kitchen.
Bees sometimes visit our downtown yard, especially in early spring. (The tiny video above shows a busy bee in our crocuses.) We have gradually learned to leave herbs and other flowering plants alone as long as possible to feed the bees and pollinators. We have also learned that many insects pollinate the plants all around us, including some sizable bumblebees that have always claimed residence near our back door. (See the array of pollinators in the slightly longer video below.)
Recently Christy Erickson contacted me to ask whether she could write a guest post for Savoring Kentucky. Christy, who lives in Dallas, founded Saving Our Bees after she tasted a friend's fresh backyard honey. Regular Savoring Kentucky readers may know that guest posts here are rare. Christy's work, though, merits a wider audience. She has our future in her heartspace, and bees play a lead role. So look for her useful, short post tomorrow, and expect to learn about pollinator plants we can grow in Kentucky to support bee health.