The first post in this series covered the roles of different bees in the colony. The second post in this series talked about reproduction, swarming and environmental needs of a colony. This final post will focus on equipment needed to start keeping bees in the city and potential disease. Glen Andresen advised that a love of nature and a love of puttering is a good
This is part two of a three part series on the beekeeping workshop I attended recently. Reproduction: It was interesting to learn that it is up to the female worker bees to determine when it is time to hatch a new queen bee, more worker bees, or drone bees. The worker bees are the ones who prepare the cells (areas in the comb where eggs
Last summer I was introduced to Glen Andresen, a local bee-keeper, at the Lents Farmers Market. He gave a short overview of bee-keeping and I signed up to receive notices about future workshops he typically hosts in the Spring. I was lucky to snag a spot in one of his recent “Intro to Beekeeping” workshops in Portland a couple weeks ago, which eventually sold out.
Our urban homestead is now a certified wildlife habitat thanks to the National Wildlife Federation (and a small fee). There is a house in our neighborhood with a metal plaque on one of their large trees stating they are certified, which is what originally piqued my interest. A couple months later, the fine folks over at GardenPunks wrote a great blog post about their certification
The design for our urban landscape is based on the food forest concept stemming from permaculture principles. One of the several important aspects of designing a food forest means utilizing “layers” in the garden. Here are those layers: The canopy (large trees) Low tree layer (dwarf fruit trees) Shrubs Herbaceous Rhizosphere (root crops) Soil Surface (cover crops) Vertical Layer (climbers, vines) Last year I focused
Birds are an important addition to the backyard food forest. Although they will steal some of my berries and fruit, they give something back with their guano, insect-eating, and simple beauty. If the competition for my produce gets too severe I will cover the berry bushes with some netting. I am willing to take that risk though in order to give these guys some habitat.
There are some major projects going on in the backyard right now! Jay is building me an 8′ x 8′ four-post trellis for my hardy kiwis to grow up – aren’t I a lucky girl? He spent the whole weekend on the project: gathering the materials from multiple lumber yards, measuring off the area, digging out the post holes, and busting up the concrete walkway.
It will be a long time before I top the weekend I just had. My weekend was full of my favorite things: being with my best friend in the whole world, gardening in the sunshine, eating bratwurst at Otto’s, sharing Sunday brunch with friends, taking country drives, playing with ceramics in my studio, tango dancing until my feet are sore… My best friend Erika, who
Where is my Indian summer in Portland this year? It feels like summer is long gone, but the autumn equinox isn’t even here yet… I think we missed out on summer this year in Portland all together. I remember one week in July that was hot and sunny, but that seemed to be the end of that. The rest of July and August were fairly