Results 1 to 16 of 16
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    Harpers Ferry, WV USA EEUU
    Posts
    47

    Post

    And IF they do, will it effect the character of the honey?

    I have a close friend who is a pastor of a church in a remote village in high sierras of northern Mexico. Many of the women in his congregation are (young) widows (with kids) whose husbands used to work for narcotraficantes in the vast opium and marijuana fields hidden in the canyons. They are widows because it is easy to end up on the wrong side of a gun in the dope business.To see the need of these Indian women and their kids would break your heart. ANY source of income would be an improvement in their situations.

    There is a carpenter in the village who has the skills to make all the woodenware we use here in the States for beekeeping, and there is enough waste pinewood from the local sawmill available for free. That's the one source of jobs in 40 miles -- other than drugrunning, and the sawmill only runs when they can snake big pine logs off the mountainside, about 6 months out of the year. Would there be any reason to NOT use green-cut pine for woodenware?

    Some of us here in the States that know what these folks are up against have been brainstorming about how to start teaching beekeeping to the widows, but people keep asking if the bees would work the opium poppies, and thus effect the honey. I have no idea about how to get a straight and dependable answer to that question. I read the earlier string from March 2004 about bees and marijuana. Where else could somebody ask such a question other than Beesource.com?

    Elevation of this village is about 6500 ft, and the terrain and plant mix looks a lot like the mountains of New Mexico, just several hundred miles further south. Outside of the poppies and ganja, there isn't any agriculture to speak of other than sideyard cornfields (milpas) In my trips there, I haven't seen ANY visible signs of beekeeping, nor any local honey on the shelves of the tiny ma & pa stores.

    Michael et als. -- anybody have any idea about how honeybees near opium would turn out?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Hirschbach, Bavaria, Germany
    Posts
    643

    Post

    Here in Germany we have a bakery product which is very heavy with poppy seeds. A high ranking person in my organization (Military Police) tested positive on a urinalysis.
    This individual directly consumed the seeds. Now this did not have a narcotic effect just a carrear ending effect. He would have gone to jail but he took a polygraph and passed.
    So as to your question you would probably have to set up a hive within range of the fields and take a sample of honey to a lab to be tested. If it tests negitive for opiates then I would venture a try. Either you will discover a new taste or rule out the venture all together. Poppys are a very unique plant. I don't know a whole lot about thier pollination just the drug part.

    ------------------
    Procrastination is the assination of inspiration.

    Gary

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,384

    Post

    Here's a bee mix of flowers with poppys
    http://www.earthlygoods.com/mixtures...lower_mix.html

    The bees like it and make honey from it.
    http://www.delm.tas.gov.au/inter.nsf...IL-54J6WC?open

    I don't know what, if any effects the honey or nectar have. But I would speculate (and I am speculating) that if the nectar was that potent there would be an illegal market for it.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    McMinnville, TN, USA
    Posts
    716

    Post

    My schooling in Horticulture comes in handy here. The nector will not contain opium. The opium is produced to protect the seeds. It is in its strongest concentration in the overy(pod). The sap of the plant has opium in it and it also contains latex so it may be used by the bees for propolis. Why would a plant want to drug/kill the insects that give it the seeds. No plant nectories contain drugs for this reason. BTW cocoa plants while in bloom are good bee plants.

    About the green wood, yes there is problems with it. Fresh pine sent is an insect repellent. And green wood warps bad. It only takes about 3 months to let them dry. Just stack the wood with stips of wood between the layers. It does help if the stack is covered. I used some old tin laid on top and held down with concrete blocks. This is easy to do but does take time.

    Good luck. If I could afford the trip I would love to go on this mission trip.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    Fredericksburg, Va
    Posts
    798

    Post

    I do not know about poppy, but I once read that if the bees are working Rhododendrons (Mountain Laurel) that the honey is toxic. The key is just that this honey gets mixed with so much other honey in the extraction process that the toxic levels become very small.

    SO it would definitely rate the lab test (and maybe several).


  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    McMinnville, TN, USA
    Posts
    716

    Post

    The rhododendrons are toxic to all but the intended pollenator. Which happens to be in the lightning bug family. Bees that collect it often die before getting back to the hive. So what little does make it into the honey is diluted. Poppies came from where bees are the main pollenator and so developed for bees. Mountain laurel are native to the US and no honey bees so they set out to find and a good pollenator but yet protect its flowers from the flower eaters.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    canada
    Posts
    3

    Post

    ....no, the honey from poppy flowers , (Papaver somniferum)
    is free from any "opium", (just as the seed, used videly in baking, does not contain any opium...)....no problem there.....otto

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    tulsa, ok usa
    Posts
    2,264

    Post

    Poppies only contain the alkaloids for opium for a short period of time during seed development. So the honey will basically be opium free. That could be a negative or a positive depending upon your marketing.


  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Lexington, KY, USA
    Posts
    504

    Post

    Hello Mark et al, There is an Austrian research project that has developed a method for building hives frome straw. This approach is being used in very poor areas of Nepal, high in the mountains where there is very little wood available. I don't have the internet address at hand but can find it again if you are interested.

  10. #10
    Jason G in Tennessee Guest

    Post

    Hillbilly,
    Did you mean cocoa as in the theobroma cacao tree from which we get chocolate or did you mean coca plant from which we get cocaine?
    I have two "cocoa trees (chocolate) and one began blooming a few weeks ago. They are small and hang upside down like a pawpaw blossom, but actually sprout directly from the trunk of the tree and not from terminal buds.
    JG

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    McMinnville, TN, USA
    Posts
    716

    Post

    As in the Cocaine shrubtree. It's blooms resemble citrus and the bees were all over it. A college buddy had it. He put a small plant in something and sent it to himself. From time to time he would make some cocaine from it. No one knew what kind a plant it was unlike pot which about anyone can look at and tell you what it is. And with my major he thought I would be the person to ask for help with it.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    Corralitos, CA, USA
    Posts
    1,247

    Post

    I have 3 Theobroma cacao trees and apparently the flowers are pollinated by a small midge in the early morning hours and not bees. Most cacao varieties require cross-pollination and although all three of mine flower I have been too lazy to get up at 5AM to hand pollinate. Hence, no cacao pods at my house as they are indoors.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    Burley, Washington, USA
    Posts
    2

    Default Re: Will bees make honey from opium poppies?

    Bees will make honey from poppies. In a Turkish cookbook of mine, it is referred to as Crazy Honey. Take it from there. As far as affordable hives go, you should look into top bar hives. Go to www.tbhsbywam.com . It is by Wyatt A. Mangum, PhD. He has been using top bar hives for a long time and in his book there is a section on making top bar hives out of reed stalks and sunflower stems, with a minimal amount of wood used. It's worth checking out.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Calgary, Alberta, CA
    Posts
    55

    Default Re: Will bees make honey from opium poppies?

    I believe it would probably be expensive as the production is quit low as the bees can't find there way back to the hive.
    First day of pollen coming in April 13, 2014.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Rader, Greene County, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    6,426

    Default Re: Will bees make honey from opium poppies?

    Welcome to Beesource, Cydfod!



    It seems interesting that you chose to revive this 10 year old thread as your initial post.
    Graham
    USDA Zone 7A Elevation 1400 ft

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    Burley, Washington, USA
    Posts
    2

    Default Re: Will bees make honey from opium poppies?

    Greetings, Rader Sidetrack.

    I was searching for nectar sources and was curious if poppies were a good source as I've seen fields growing for seed production. This thread just happened to pop up. It wasn't until after I had posted that I saw how old the thread was. It's still an interesting concept of what pure poppy honey would be like.

    Bryan
    USDA Zone 8b, Elev. 65 ft

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Ads