Posts Tagged ‘Honeybees’

Queens for a Day

I spent half of my Earth Day doing computer stuff on the couch.

I did finish the blog post on baptisia that has been lingering in my “Half Finished” Box for over a week.

But… sitting on the couch is not what one should be doing on Earth Day so off I went to explore the land with Richard and our pack of dogs.

We rambled on the nature trails.

I photographed some flowers.

But mostly we sat and went snake-eyed – just gazing with no comment.

Queens Maria, Elizabeth and Latifa manage the hives in the foreground. Cleopatra can be seen in the background.

As we drove past the bee hives, I was inspired to write a blog post even though there was already one for the day.

I started thinking about how the honey I harvest from my bees allows my palette to have a taste of the land.

My honey is flavored by red maple, henbit, redbud, buckwheat titi and Japanese apricot.

It tastes of willow, native hawthorn, spring beauty, blackberry, vetch and clover.

At times there is a tinge of wild plum, huckleberry, wild cherry, black locust and black gum.

Then the essence of tulip poplar, native holly, persimmon, palmetto, rattan vine and milkweed comes to the table.

Woodrow strolls toward Queen Kelly Mitchell's hive.

And… the savory nectars of sumac, cyrilla, sourwood, clethra, goldenrod, boneset, Spanish needles, asters and eastern baccharis are added to the medley.

I tend to think that the honey is tainted by the less desirable plants on my land like Chinese privet, Chinese wisteria and popcorn tree.  But these invaders are part of my land and so it is only fitting that they put their own peculiar spin on the final product.

I guess it was inevitable that a flower freak like me would become a beekeeper.  A spoonful of my honey is a distillation of the flora of my land.

This melange of nectars results in a spicy honey different than any I have tasted before.

It melts on my tongue and I know that I am tasting a unique representation of my land.

So tonight I will pour a glass of home-made mead and drink a toast to my queens – Latifah, Elizabeth, Maria, Cleopatra and Kelly Mitchell.  This Earth Day post is in honor of them.  They have changed my perception of the land.


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