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I just bought 7 acres in S.E. South Carolina and would like to get involved in bee keeping. What kinds of plants would do best in that area? I saw the post about buckwheat and was wondering if it would do well in Zone 8b.

Any other suggestions are appreciated.
 

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First of all, allow me to gripe - Beesource should not kick us off the page by timing us out so goddamn fast.

I appologize. It happens way too often.

This is a great question. If more beekeepers planted for their bees, they's MAKE a lot more of their own luck!

You would do well to look for a book titled, Honey Plants of North America, revised edition, by John Lovell, ISBN-13 978-0686209348, available through Brushy Mountain Bee Farm's catalog on page 72 of the 2014 issue for $19.95 + shipping, also available through the A.I. Root Company.

There is also a book titled, American Honey Plants by Frank Chapman Pellet, ISBN-13: 978-0915698011, copyrighted in 1926.

Do make a trip to used book stores looking in the garden sections for flower books from your area, but most of all GET TO A LOCAL BEEKEEPING CLUB MEETING and ask lots of beginner questions. The only stupid question is the one you didn't ask.

That said, do try planting a basswood tree, also known as a Silver Linden. Other East Coast trees to look into include Tulip Poplar, Sorhgum, walnuts, oranges, and maple. There are many others - I do hope the many great eastern beekeepers will chime in here on your thread! If you have any swamp land, add to your list Tupelo (the East Coast's favorite honey) and Bald Cypress (and/or Pond Cypress - a close relative) as the cypresses are threatened species and make excellent beehive wood.

I love buckwheat honey - especially on buckwheat pancakes - but it seems most people do not. It is a sporadic seller, as an occaisional buckwheat honey enthusiast buys up a lot of it. You could plant it anyways just to feed the bees. They love it. Out here in California it blooms in or July, about a month after the sages and it dries up about 2 weeks before the sumacs open.

One good goal would be to have overlapping blooms throughout the year, so that you don't have too long of a nectar and or pollen dearth. This should help reduce losses of bees due to robbing fights. A device called a "robber screen" is also a big help in this cause. Get one for each hive.

Best of luck to you! Starting out by planting is a smart start in beekeeping.
 

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kilo-- the other day Barry mentioned in one of his posts that by checking the "remember me" box under the username and password boxes upon logging in you will not be timed out. It has worked for me. I too felt frustration over being logged out, not anymore I check that darn box now.
 

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>First of all, allow me to gripe - Beesource should not kick us off the page by timing us out so goddamn fast.

I never get timed out...

Planting for bees:
http://www.bushfarms.com/beesfaqs.htm#planting

My 18 acres is planted in:
linden
fruit trees
tulip poplar
black locust
red maple
pussywillow
birdsfoot trefoil
white dutch clover
white sweet clover
yellow sweet clover
hubam clover
ladino clover
alfalfa
purple prairie clover
goldenrod
joe pye weed
ironweed
dandelions
wild mustard
henbit
Echinacea
chicory
milkweed

The things I'd like to get rid of:
thistles (mostly to keep the weed board happy)
burdock (ugly and produces nothing)
lambs quarters (same)
poison hemlock
poison ivy

Things I'd like less of:
mulberry trees
grass

Things I'd like more of:
fruit trees
black locust
linden
maple
dandelions
goldenrod
asters
smartweed
 
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