Each spring, summer, and fall, little known corners of the Arboretum become literal beehives of activity, as thousands of honeybees make their way in and out of real hives.
Honeybees have made their home in 40 hives placed all around the Arboretum each year for 20 years, thanks to the work of the Arboretum’s beekeepers. This year, we welcomed our newest beekeeper, Greg Fischer. Greg manages the bees on our property that are vital to pollinating the thousands of trees and plants at the Arboretum, as well as producing honey.
Greg is the Arboretum’s fourth beekeeper. He’s responsible for maintaining between 40,000 and 50,000 bees. Two to three times a month, Greg visits each hive, inspecting them to make sure the bee colony is healthy, checking for disease, and, in the fall, harvesting honey.
This month, you may see Greg out with the bees, harvesting honey which will be sold in The Arboretum Store. Most hives make 25 to 50 pounds of honey that Greg can harvest, although it varies from year to year. The honey from our bees, one of the store’s most popular and fast-selling items, will arrive this month.
In addition to serving as the Arboretum's beekeeper, Greg owns Wild Blossom Meadery, which produces honey wine. You can sample mead and meet Greg in person at our Honey Bee Weekend.