Bees do not only visit flowers. Propolis is a resinous substance that bees collect from tree buds or other botanical sources to disinfect and to get rid of bacteria and moisture. It is also used to reduce draughts in the hive.
It is a brown sticky substance very hard to remove from hands and clothing. Why shouldn’t we take advantage of it?
Propolis is disinfecting and anti-bacterial.
The beekeeper makes a tincture out of it by dissolving it into alcohol of 95°. Some drops of this tincture mixed with honey or a little sugar is an ideal remedy to prevent and ease throat ache.
The wax is used to produce beeswax, candles, …
As mentioned above, some larvae are nourished with royal jelly. Because of this substance normal bee larvae can become a queen which is
twice as big as a normal bee. She lives up to 4 years while a worker bee lives only 6 weeks.
How powerful must this product be? Only a specialized bee keeper is able to harvest the royal jelly. About 2 grams every two days.
The royal jelly is harvested with a pipette. It goes without saying that this product is very expensive, but a very powerful one.
Other but not less important uses of honey.
Everybody knows the story about the bee and the flower. So, bees are very important insects, necessary for the pollination of different crops.
Let’s think about juicy apples, peers, plumbs.
In spring the fruit cultivators beg for bees. So there are a lot of bee keepers who lend out their bees to the fruit cultivators in order to obtain a perfect pollination resulting in a bigger harvest.
Bees are he first insects in spring because they don’t hibernate, whereas wasps and humblebees do. The bees are active the whole year round.
Wasps and humblebees and other insects have to build their nests first before they can go and pollinate.
For the first flowers they are too late. The bees have already done that task.
Genetically Modified Organism (GMO)
GMO are a huge danger for bees and other pollinating insects. These genetic modified organisms find more and more their application in agriculture. The beekeeper unions have strongly opposed against these manipulated crops.
Especially in France, millions of bees would have died because of these gmo’s.
Let’s hope this comes to an end. This would mean the end of a very useful, exiting and protected insect.
It is generally knows that honey is very useful. We limit the information to own experiences as non professional beekeepers. However, the help of professional and specialized beekeepers has come in very helpful.