Can Backwards Beekeeping work in a cold climate?

Phillip writes:

I've been reading your website and watching your videos for the past few months and I love what you guys do and the way you do it.

I've been interested in starting up a honeybee hive in my backyard for some time now, and I would love to follow the backwards beekeeping methods with starter strips instead of plastic foundation. I also like the destruction method of harvesting honey because it's so simple.

I have my doubts, though, that the backwards beekeeping methods would work well in a colder climate of say, St. John's, Newfoundland, which is where I live -- it's a big and generally cold island in the middle of the North Atlantic. There are only two beekeeping operations in the province. The bees survive the winters, though, and seem to do well here (and they're mite-free). But the summer season is short and the honey flow doesn't last too long when it does kick in.

Do you know if backwards beekeeping is even possible in such a cold climate with a short summer season? I can see it working well in a warm place like LA, but Newfoundland is nowhere close to LA.

All the best,


P.S. I thought I should include a photo of the spot where I'm thinking about putting my hive.

I took this photo 5 minutes ago. This is what May 1st looks like in St. John's, Newfoundland.

Kirk's reply: