honey bees

Honey bees on the farm will pollinate our flowers.  Todd began a relationship with honey bees over 50 years when he and his brother Tom, 9 years old, bought their first hive for their family farm. They were enchanted by how industrious the bees were, giving them honey, pollen, propolis and beeswax for candles and salve. Around 40% of what is eaten is pollinated by insects, this to a great degree by honey bees. Because there are so few nectar & pollen plants on Thornhill Farm, we are planting these plants for the bees. We know the soil is worn out on the farm because our honey bees make so little honey. This is why we have pigs. When the forest is cleared, we do not burn the wood that is left behind, but chip it and mix these wood chips with manure and fungus mycelium to make piles of compost to improve the soil. Last summer we grew peas and oats as a green manure crop, and the pea flowers gave voluminous amounts of nectar to the honey bees and pollinating insects.


writings & images about the honey bees of Thornhill Farm


Live from the Hive by Annie Watson – Winter 1997 to July 2015 archives

  • the turning point Our season and work with the honey bees starts when there is snow on the ground in March. Through the late winter, spring, and early summer for almost four months, we visit the bees and encourage them to grow into strong colonies to make honey and prepare for the next winter. We are never quite ...
  • Apitherapy propolis throat spray & wound wash with purple loosestrife & Usnea We never cease to be amazed in life when people and events come together synergistically, where their efforts and the resulting outcomes grow far beyond the potential accomplishments of a single individual. Our propolis, purple loosestrife, and Usnea wound wash, the newest product offered by the honey house, is not only the result of such ...
  • live foods, enzymes and raw honey It is not fresh news that the standard American diet (acronym is s.a.d.!) is not health supportive. For at least four decades, we have been listening to the medical community’s advice about the quality and quantity of fat and fiber in our diets, and the increased incidence of heart disease, diabetes (particularly Type II, adult ...
  • Wild Cherry – Botanical Treasure Our northern woods, fields, and wetlands are rich in botanical treasures. Many of these plants are medicinal as well. In particular,Vermont transitional forests are home to one of our most valued medicinal trees, the wild cherry, or Prunus serotina. We value the wild cherry for its inner bark which is a main ingredient in our ...
  • Welcome to Spring The bees have overwintered well and are starting to fly on warm days. We have spent much of the winter making Apitherapy honey elderberry extract and Honey house propolis salve. As I was walking away from a gathering recently, and someone asked me about the bees. Wherever I go in northern Vermont, there is awareness and interest in ...