Two weeks ago I arranged to buy six new bee hives from a small bee supply shop in Loja. I have done business with them before and do like them. Because of my poor Spanish it was hard to understand how to buy the bees. In the states I would just mail order the queen and bees. Here they do not seem to have that service. Actually they do not have any mail delivery service in Ecuador. Wow no junk mail, although we do have a post office box number and get about five pieces of mail a year.
Each bee hives was only $75 but the bees were $135 For some reason I could not buy bees separately in a small box so I had to buy small “supers” with five frames which hold the brood and queen.
The photo shows the small beehives and our new site. Next week we will transfer the bees to the new regular beehives. I think I will be able to use the small hives to breed more bees. Looks like I am getting into the bee business.
Actually, compared to other farm products, honey is pretty profitable. I have started to sell at the Vilcabamba organic farmers market. We are milking two cows and make a very delicate soft cheese and Kiefer. In six months we will have honey and we usually have some vegetables or fruit. If we can make our fences goat proof, then we might add goats for goat milk and cheese.
In Biodynamic farming we try to create a diverse ecosystem. Rudolf Steiner, the originator of Biodynamics, talks about the four groups of elemental beings. The gnomes or earth elementals, the undines or water elementals, the sylphs or air elementals and the salamanders or fire elementals. He explains how the fire elementals are attracted to the insect world and especially the bees. It is the fire elementals surrounding the insects and bees that brings the warmth and light of the cosmic world to the plant. It is the fire spirits that collect the love and warmth that streams down to the earth through the light of the sun and indeed the whole cosmos and through the plant this is led down into the depth of the earth where it is received by the gnomes. Here we see how the plant stands as mediator between heaven and earth. The elemental beings are the workers who make all this possible on a spiritual level.
Having said the above the bees are aggressive here. Thats me all dressed up