Making a hive into a home
Yesterday I was weeding the garden, minding my own business, when I overheard the most extraordinary conversation. I didn’t catch the whole thing, but it started like this:
“Honey, I’ve been thinking. Maybe it’s time we split from the family and found ourselves a new home. It’s getting so crowded in here, I can’t even relax. What do you think?”
“I agree,” said Queenie, backing into a cell. “The pantry is full and the nursery is overflowing. I’m running out of places to put my eggs!” She wiggled her abdomen, then paused. “But where would we go?”
He buzzed briefly before answering. “Well, there’s a cute Victorian down the street if you don’t mind pink. And that row house across the tracks—the one with all the curtains?—looks friendly enough. Why don’t I take some of the kids and scout around for some new digs?”
“Great idea!,” she said, searching for another cell. “You can start with that cute Tudor down on Elm. The balcony is to die for!”
After hearing a conversation like that, I just had to take a look for myself. You won’t believe what I found.
The creator of these amazing bee homes, Janice Jakielski, is a ceramics professor at the Massachusetts College of Art and Design. She and her husband tend six colonies of very lucky bees in Sutton, Massachusetts. She says:
This is our third year keeping bees and while it’s an ongoing learning experience we are completely addicted. I’ve always been in love with anything miniature and indulge this love by turning my hives into scaled down houses. I look at a lot of dollhouse designs and tutorials for inspiration. So far we have a Tudor, a Netherlands inspired row home, and the latest completed is the pink Victorian. I’m aware that the bees don’t care what their hives look like, but I admit to getting a kick out of seeing them hanging out on the balconies or walking up and down the staircase.
Honey Bee Suite