Next meeting: Sunday, June 30

The next meeting of the Backwards Beekeepers is scheduled!

Sunday, June 30

Citibank, Silver Lake branch
2450 Glendale Blvd
Los Angeles 90039

This month our guru-in-chief Kirk Anderson will speak about Charles Martin Simon's principles of doing beekeeping backwards: how to inspect crowded hives, how to make sure your bees have room to grow and thrive naturally, and how, when beekeeping, to be simple and think like a bee instead of like a human.

As usual, everyone is welcome to the meetings, especially those who are new to beekeeping.

See you there!


Backwards Beekeepers in the LA Weekly

Rob and Chelsea (who also lead HoneyLove.org) are featured in an LA Weekly cover story about the Backwards Beekeepers. Also appearing: LA Backwards Beekeepers Kirk, Ceebs, and Max; LA City Councilman Bill Rosendahl; retired California State Supreme Court justice Carlos Moreno; Pizzeria Mozza; and more!

Soon [Rob] started going on rescues, too — as many as three a day. He climbed a tangerine tree in the middle of the night and brought down the biggest open-air hive Chelsea had ever seen. With a frenzied smile, Rob gripped the severed branch with massive honeycombs dangling off it — a 60-pound lollipop of bees. Chelsea snapped a picture.

Then the dawning realization: "Where the hell do we put them?" It is a recurring question that will consume their next few days, then months, then years.

The tangerine tree hive sat on their roof for a spell. The McFarlands live in a modest house in the Del Rey neighborhood, a narrow, two-mile strip that cleaves Culver City from Mar Vista. They don't exactly have a lot of space. And what kind of neighbor welcomes a swarm?

By some miracle, after weeks of shlepping hives across the city — after the crazy logistics of matching up people who had bees but didn't want them with people who want bees but didn't have them — Chelsea secured a spot: a small, scrubby hilltop in agrarian Moorpark, overlooking an organic farm owned by a friend of a friend. The McFarlands christened the hilltop the HoneyLove Sanctuary.

Today it hosts 16 hives in colorful wood boxes, each from somewhere around L.A., rescued from water meters and birdhouses and compost bins, places Rob can't recall anymore.

"Each one of these is a family," Chelsea says. "We're usually rushing to beat the exterminator out there."

Read the whole thing here.