Our beekeeping story began in the fall of 2012 when we left the city and moved to our 15-acre homestead in rural Carlock. The house lies halfway up a hill, surrounded by 6 acres of white oak, shagbark hickory, black walnut, and cherry trees with 9 acres of meadow at the base of the hill. Visions of an orchard, greenhouse, and high tunnels for produce began filling our heads and MeadowRidge was born. We began planting fruit trees and tilling up a 10,000 sq ft garden the next spring, but the prairie land wasn't very willing to surrender to cultivation. After a few years of struggling we thought bee pollination services might be a perfect addition to our "farm". So in the spring of 2016 we purchased our first two nucleus hives. (A nucleus, aka "nuc", is a small 5-frame colony, in our case purchased from a commercial apiary in Georgia, complete with a queen and her worker bees.) We learned very quickly that a hive is not a static colony and our two hives became four by the end of the year. And so our fascination with honey bees began.
In the years since 2016, we have retired and our two colony apiary has grown to about twenty hives. We didn't begin this journey with the intention of making it a business or even selling honey, but honey bees are busy workers and provided us with far more honey than we could ever use. It is our desire to share with you not only the honey they have provided but also some of the stories and lessons we have learned along the way.