This book is exactly what its subtitle describes it as - an absolute beginner's guide to keeping bees. Written and illustrated in full color by a couple who not too long ago were neophyte beekeepers themselves, it aims to first capture readers' interest in the fun and fascination of this hobby and then give them basic information needed to get through their first year keeping bees.
Homegrown Honey Bees introduces the basic procedures, possibilities, and pleasures of keeping bees. Spectacular macro photography brings the inner workings of the hive to life, while the passionate, playful text leads the beginning beekeeper through the first year. All the primary concerns and questions are addressed, from allergies, permits and restrictions, and potential issues with the neighbors to hive structure, colony hierarchy, and bee behavior. Beekeepers Alethea Morrison and Mars Vilaubi chronicle the happening in their own hive and share the challenges of their first year, from replacing a failing queen bee to sustaining a colony over a cold winter, as well as the reward of tasting their first honey harvest. Beginners, dreamers, families, and educators will find this highly visual reference an indispensible guide to becoming a confident, happy beekeeper.
—Jenna Woginrich, author of Barnheart and Made from Scratch
Alethea Morrison is the author of Homegrown Honey Bees. She lived in San Francisco with her husband, photographer Mars Vilaubi, before stepping into the wild yonder of rural Massachusetts together to raise their son, keep bees and chickens, brew beer, sew clothes, grow heirloom beans, and otherwise slow down to smell the flowers of a handmade life. Their experience raising chickens was chronicled in Chick Days. Morrison works as the Creative Director at Storey Publishing and serves as president of the Northern Berkshire Beekeepers Association.
Photographer Mars Vilaubi chronicled the adventures of his three backyard hens from their first days out of the egg through their first days laying eggs in Chick Days. He lives in western Massachusetts.