New­bees and an older bee

The Tribune (NZ) - - PLAN BEE -

Lind­say Moir, a club mem­ber for 19 years, said he got into bee­keep­ing af­ter ‘a bit of a midlife cri­sis’.

‘‘My Dad was a bee­keeper, but he died when I was a tod­dler. When I got to my 40s I won­dered what the at­trac­tion was. The best hive I ever had was on a hand­ker­chief sec­tion in Merivale – I got more than 100kg of honey off that ev­ery year.’’

Lind­say now shares his knowl­edge with club mem­bers. He said hob­by­ists must go into the in­ter­est with their eyes open, how­ever. ’’It’s not a case of just buy­ing a hive and leav­ing it to go. Hives take up a lot of time, es­pe­cially in sea­son. You should be go­ing into the hive ev­ery nine days, check­ing for any­thing un­usual.’’

He said naivety of­ten stops peo­ple get­ting in­volved but join­ing a club en­sures there’s al­ways some­one to call on for help.

New­bies Madi­son and An­nette Walker - mother and daugh­ter - got their first hive in March this year. Madi­son ad­mits to be­ing the in­sti­ga­tor of bring­ing the hive onto her par­ents’ 10acre prop­erty in Styx.

‘‘It was a slow-burn­ing thing re­ally,’’ Madi­son said. ‘‘Mum and Dad had a woman who win­tered ten hives on the prop­erty and in the spring the fruit trees flour­ished and we just re­ally no­ticed the dif­fer­ence.’’

The pair are now plan­ning their gar­den around the bees and the honey. ‘‘We’re plant­ing laven­der this sum­mer, and thyme,’’ An­nette said. ‘‘They’re just such gen­tle lit­tle things.’’

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