We just got our bees for the Brooklyn Green Show House! They arrived late at night and we put them in their hives (hived them) at the crack of dawn. We put the hives on the green roof so the bees can help pollinate our strawberries!

First we put the stands made of salvaged wood:


Then we put the hive parts:


Meanwhile the two packets of bees were waiting by the side. Here is one:



First we took out the queen and her little helpers. They are in a small box closed off with sweet stuff. We take the box and put it in the hive. Over a day or two the bees will eat through the sweet stuff and release her into her new hive. The queen and her helpers:



We put the queen’s box into the hive:


Then we take the bees and dump them in the hive!:



And that’s it! We will let the new hive chill for a week or so before checking in on them to make sure all is well.

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It is so special to be able to keep bees in Brooklyn. We really feel good about the whole process. Bees are a cornerstone of the planet’s wellbeing. They help form the foundation from which everything else grows. To be allowed to help them do their job is a real gift. We are honored to have bees on the show house roof.

As Brooklyn green builders and contractors we feel that green building is so much more than salvaged two by fours and low VOC paint. Being a green builder is literally about building a green environment. Green building is less about assembling inanimate objects like in normal building. Green building is about working with the biosphere so that it all grows together – bees, plants, people, houses….The Brooklyn brownstone is no longer just bricks and sheet rock. It is a living organism that needs to be carefully assembled so that it grows food, fresh air, happy people and animals.

So yes bees are a very important part of this symbiosis.

Megan Paska from Brooklyn Honey is giving us advice on the bee keeping process. She is very knowledgeable. We got the bees with the help of Andrew Coté who runs Silvermine Apiary as well as Bees Without Borders. Thanks guys!