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I'm very new to beekeeping in fact I don't have a hive yet. I will be starting my first one in the spring on some friends land in Eau Claire county, Wisconsin. Their property is, among other things, a woodland plant sanctuary full of wildflowers, many of which are endangered species. To make a long story short....they understand, without needing to be told, the importance of honeybees, the fact that they're in trouble, and they welcome the pollinators. For my part, I welcome all of those things plus the challenge and the learning opportunity and the honey!

Hopefully, by being a bit ahead of the game, I'll have enough time to gather as much info as possible before the time comes.

I'll probably mostly just lurk and soak up all of your valuable wisdom until I have an actual hive to talk about.

Though...I do have homebrewing experience so perhaps I can contribute something to the meadmaking forum in the mean time!
 

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Welcome to the forum Cicada! I'm a newb myself, but I'll vouch for the amount of knowledge contained in these here virtual walls. Good for you for getting ahead of the game; 8 months of learning will be invaluable when spring rolls around. I got a late start on mine, and the learning curve was/is pretty steep. The great folks here helped me through it, though. Have a good one, and best of luck. :)
 

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Hello and Welcome!

I'm sure you'll learn a lot here. Check out the "How to Start Beekeeping" subforum: it contains many useful suggestions for those just starting out. Also check your local library for books/videos on beekeeping. Lastly, get involved with a local club. Clubs are great places to find mentors and get connnected to nearby beekeepers.'
http://www.wihoney.com/LocalBeeClubs.html
 

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Hi Cicada
It's great to see another Wisconsin member here, especially one so close. We are almost neighbors!
There are lots of beeks in your area, a couple of clubs and a great workshop held every spring that I hear is one of the best.
You should have plenty of expert advice to take advantage of locally, as well as here on Beesource.
Sheri
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks, y'all!

Yes, I'll be doing lots of reading over the next 8 months. Definately will be looking for a mentor or at least some face to face folks to commiserate with. It could be a bit rough...beekeping is illegal within the city limits of Eau Claire, where I live, so I'll be driving 30 minutes one-way just to get to my hives let alone other people's hives/club meetings etc. It does appear that there are people out there, though.

Thanks for the link, Indy!
 

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Welcome,...from Southern Wisconsin.

"..a woodland plant sanctuary full of wildflowers, many of which are endangered species. ....they understand, without needing to be told, the importance of honeybees, the fact that they're in trouble, and they welcome the pollinators."

Since the honey bee, Apis m., is not native to North America, they didn't evolve along with the native plants as much as the 'native pollinators'. There are some plants and 'wildflowers' that provide a source of pollen and nectar but I don't think they are as well known as those non-natives [some considered invasive] like sweet clover and purple loosestrife. Prairie restoration and the planting of native flowers is a recent development. I just haven't seen a comprehensive list of native wildflowers that honey bees frequent often,..like goldenrod or Joe-pye-weed for example. There are lists of plants for honey bees but they usually include both non-native and native and that isn't often distinguished.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks OldBee. I think it will be interesting to see what they go for and what they don't. It's a rather ecclectic mix of plants there, actually...some native...some non-native medicinals....some just plain ornamental....a few fruit trees (plum and cherry)

I know that there are things there that bees seem to go for...wether or not they'll combine to make tolerable honey could be another story.

I've ordered the book, "Honey Plants of North America" by John H Lovell from Amazon. I plan to pour over it. :D

-Paula
 

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Welcome to Beesource. I'm not to far south of you. There are a few members here that aren't to far from you.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Yes, Beeslave...I think Blair is pretty close to Eau Claire and even a little closer to where my hive(s) will be. Maybe we'll cross paths some time. :)
 
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