The Idle Beekeeper

The Low-Effort, Natural Way to Keep Bees

From building a hive to harvesting honey, a top urban beekeepers shows how to keep bees the simple way.

Global bee populations have been rapidly declining for years, and it’s not just our honey supply that’s at stake: the contribution of bees to the pollination of various crops is essential to human survival. But even in industrial apiaries, bees are in distress, hiving in synthetic and hostile environments. Enter idle beekeeping: the grassroots, low-intervention system that seeks to emulate the behaviour and habitat of bees in the wild-and it only requires two active days of beekeeping per year, one in the spring and another in the fall.

In The Idle Beekeeper, Bill Anderson calls upon his decades of experience as an urban beekeeper to celebrate these under-appreciated insects and show how simple and rewarding beekeeping can be. In this entertaining, philosophical, and practical guide, Anderson teaches how to build a hive system, step-by-step, developed to allow maximum idleness, harvest honey and extract honeycomb, make mead and beeswax candles, and closely observe and understand these fascinating and productive creatures. For anyone interested in keeping bees, The Idle Beekeeper is the definitive guide to getting started, even in a city, and without effort.

Bill Anderson

An urban beekeeper and educator based in London who writes the regular beekeeping column for The Idler magazine, and his online Idle Beekeeping course is currently available from The Idler website. In the other 363 days he isn’t tending to his hives, Anderson is a television drama director, working on a huge variety of shows, including Dr. Who and Mr. Selfridge.

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