Is my Yard OK?
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Thread: Is my Yard OK?

  1. #1

    Default Is my Yard OK?

    howdy all. Looking to get into bee keeping in spring 2020. My biggest concern is my location. I live on 1.5 acres in a subdivision out in the middle of the country. My concern isn't neighbors, but wondering if my location good enough for bees. I live outside Orion, Illinois and we have many corn and soybean fields local, as well as hay fields within a mile or two. I plan on converting my small garden (and maybe more yard) into a clover patch. Just want to know if this sounds reasonable before I spend alot of money on the setup to be ready for spring.

    Thanks...AndyDoc

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Location
    Byron, Il, USA
    Posts
    373

    Default Re: Is my Yard OK?

    I also live in an Illinois subdivision, with lots of corn and soybeans nearby. It's fine. It helps if there is some variety, woods and creeks, pastures. Corn is worthless for bees, but soybeans can actually get you some honey. Subdivisions are actually pretty good places for bees, lots of different plants and trees growing. I wouldn't worry too much. Just try it.

    As a warning, bees can get expensive fast if you don't watch out. Are you planning to buy a package of bees? If so, read up on varroa mite control and buy some anti-mite strips. Apivar is one many people use, and is easy for a beginner. If you are buying bees from someone local, ask them what they use to control mites.

  4. #3
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Grand Rapids MI USA
    Posts
    1,518

    Default Re: Is my Yard OK?

    Ya, it’s the trees that count. One black locust tree on a good year can equal a acre of clover yield.
    Rod

  5. #4

    Default Re: Is my Yard OK?

    Great...thanks for the info. I read alot that bees get expensive fast. I am planning on building 2 hives and getting packaged bees (but also contemplating Nucs). Got any recommendations for bee sources in this area? Was looking at honeybeesonline as they are not too far (3 hours across the state)

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2019
    Location
    Winston-Salem, NC
    Posts
    320

    Default Re: Is my Yard OK?

    Don't get addicted like me, $10,000 later, 8 months later.
    NCSBA Certified Beekeeper - my Youtube Vlog
    https://www.youtube.com/c/BackyardBeesNC

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2018
    Location
    Sisters, Oregon
    Posts
    138

    Default Re: Is my Yard OK?

    Quote Originally Posted by andydoc View Post
    Great...thanks for the info. I read alot that bees get expensive fast. I am planning on building 2 hives and getting packaged bees (but also contemplating Nucs).
    Boy, if you can get good nucs thatís the way to go. I did both last year and the nucs won hands down because they had an established laying queen out of the gate as well as brood frames. Even if you have a great package queen (and you may) she will take a few days to get started laying. Then it will take 21 days to have the first brood hatch out and 26 for drones. So youíre fighting attrition with a package for bees who only live 6 weeks in the spring and summer. Plus depending on the age of the bees that were shaken in you can have an imbalance of duties. Who is the colony going to blame for an imbalance? The queen. So they may supercede her and often do. If you are going that route do what you can to put in drawn comb for them to build on instead of new foundation. I love my package hive but gave them a head start with drawn comb and babied them more than the others.

    Good luck to you.
    I'm smart but at the end of the day I'm still the help.

  8. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Lumpkin County, GA
    Posts
    861

    Default Re: Is my Yard OK?

    Quote Originally Posted by andydoc View Post
    Great...thanks for the info. I read alot that bees get expensive fast. I am planning on building 2 hives and getting packaged bees (but also contemplating Nucs). Got any recommendations for bee sources in this area? Was looking at honeybeesonline as they are not too far (3 hours across the state)
    Join a local club and get your bees from them. Also, I would suggest starting with nucs instead of purchasing packages. Most beeks that supply nucs are much more helpful with questions than package suppliers. Also, treat your bees for mites if you want to be successful as a newbee.

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