Honey Bees

Beehive
Busy bees

A few years ago, a swarm of bees took up residence in one of our wood duck boxes.  I could stand mesmerized for long stretches of time watching them busily working flowers in our landscaping and vegetable gardens.  

Did you know honeybees make a small slit at the base of some larger flowers and extract the nectar from outside the flower?  This was my observation on hosta flowers.  I was also surprised so see that most of the flowers in our landscaping, though they were beautiful and even fragrant, were not the least bit interesting to the bees.

beeframe2Honeybees seem to get drunk in crocus flowers, rolling around in ecstasy inside, but daffodils and tulips sit undisturbed.  This is because hybridizing and genetically selecting for specific traits in plants/flowers often results in poor or no nectar or pollen production, or these plant products are lacking critical nutrients the bees
need.  

Now that I have my own beehive, I plant with intention, and rely
heavily on native plants I select from the little nursery around the corner that specializes in natives (Scioto Gardens) or from friends who are willing to share a little piece of their own gardens.

Want to see more bees? Check out this short home movie!

Read more on Patty’s Retreat.

Read more on How We Recharge.


Posted by Patty Shipley.

Green Chicken Soup

greenchxsoup
Photo and recipes courtesy of Elena’s Pantry

Ingredients

  • 2 quarts chicken stock
  • 1 bunch kale, chopped
  • 3 carrots, sliced
  • 1 cup shiitake mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 cup shredded chicken (optional)

Instructions

  1. Place chicken stock in a soup pot over medium heat, reserving 2 cups stock
  2. Take reserved stock and blend it with kale in a blender, until smooth and creamy
  3. Pour kale-stock mixture into pot of chicken stock
  4. Add carrots and mushrooms (and shredded chicken if you have it)
  5. Cook for 30 minutes, or until carrots are tender
  6. Serve!

Solomon’s Seal

solomon
Solomon’s Seal

A beautiful plant native to Ohio that is effortless to grow and will spread quickly to choke out weeds.  Mine came from Scioto Gardens, a wonderful local nursery run by Mike and Linda Johnson.  

Scioto Gardens specializes in native Ohio plants and Mike is an extremely knowledgeable and personable horticulturist.  Both Mike and his wife are big believers in holistic health and caring for the environment and our pollinators.

solomon2
Solomon’s Seal

I always check Scioto Gardens first, and I prefer buying native plants because they’re hardier than hybrids and more likely to attract honeybees, butterflies and birds.  When we hybridize plants, most often they no longer supply nectar or pollen needed by pollinators and hummingbirds.

Add to that the practice of spraying weeds (native plants that provide diverse nutrition AND nectar and pollen), and you can begin to see the problems faced by the honeybees.

Read more on Patty’s Retreat.

Read more on How We Recharge.


Posted by Patty Shipley.