As I was working toward being able to have a flock of chickens, I had also developed a desire to have bees. I had offhandedly mentioned it to the food pantry but wasn’t willing to push the issue because, as I mentioned last time, we don’t have final approval for the chickens yet. I had actually moved forward with the bees though, and purchased a hive of bees with a confirmed date to pick them up. So, I had a hard bee deadline. That, and I was going to be gone for the two weeks leading up to my bee pick up date so my deadline was looming especially close.
It turns out that bees are not allowed by my HOA either, because they would be ruled as “livestock” since they produce food. So, I had to find somewhere to put my bees. The location would have to be close by my house, because during much of the year the bees need to be attended to a couple of times a week. A good friend had said I could put them at her house, but it turns out that she hadn’t asked her husband and he declined.
The veterinarian who takes care of our beloved Golden Retrievers is within walking distance to our house. I’m not a very good judge of space, but I’m guessing the land that her office is on is at least 2-3 acres. (I mentioned before that I live in an area that not long ago was quite rural.). So, I marched into her office and just asked her if I could put bees on her land. She took a few days to think about it and to talk to other beekeepers, then agreed to let me use one of her pastures which I estimate to be in the ballpark of an acre. She said that if I cleaned out the building on that property, that I could use the land rent free until she sells it. It is not actively for sale, but in such a rapidly developing area, things happen. She also said that I could keep chickens on the pasture as well.
As I write this, I am in the Barcelona airport where we will fly home shortly and I will pick up my bees tomorrow. I will also procure chickens sometimes in the next couple of weeks. I could go get chicks tomorrow, but I’d rather buy either pullets or full grown hens so they’ll be ready to lay quicker.
So. That’s where I find myself now. My garden is in full swing and I’m about to dive head first into bees and chickens both. Here we go!