The new River District Apiary provides a welcoming home for some very important neighbours. Aside from making delicious honey, the River District honey bees will support our local eco-system and help plants grow in our communities, gardens and public spaces.
The Apiary at River District was built by Wesgroup to create a temporary home for honey bees, one of the world’s top pollinators. You'll see the Apiary nestled amongst nearby trees and visible from the walking paths just south of Town Centre. The bees collect nectar from blossoms and flowers throughout the neighbourhood and turn it into sweet natural honey.
On any sunny day, you may see Master Beekeeper Janet and the River District honey bees hard at work in the Apiary. Janet began her study and care of bees 12 years ago, a natural outgrowth of her lifelong interest in ecology and biodiversity. Her passion is supporting bee health, raising locally adapted queens, and educating a new generation of beekeepers. If you're in the area, stop by for a chat! Janet loves to talk about our friends, the bees.
You’ll find the Apiary just south of Town Centre, along River District Crossing, near the riverfront walking paths. We’re currently practicing safe social distancing, but stay tuned for information on future tours and where to buy River District’s very own natural honey.
For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Are bees friendly?
Yes! Unlike wasps and hornets, honey bees are friendly and peaceful. Because they can only sting once (they die after stinging), they don’t want to sting you! Bees will only sting if they feel threatened (for example, if you squish them). They may buzz around you to investigate, but they won’t bother you for too long.
Wasps and hornets are more aggressive and can sting multiple times. They will hang around especially if you have food. Luckily, those are not the type of bees we have at our Apiary. Honey bees are only interested in getting food for the hive, in the form of nectar and pollen.
Can I come see the hives?
Right now, we’re practicing social distancing.
We plan to offer small group tours at the Apiary in the future, when it’s safe to do so.
How can I get my hands on some River District honey?
Our busy bees have been making honey all spring and it will be ready for purchase in August (while quantities last), so stay tuned on how you can buy a jar!
For each jar of honey, half of the proceeds will be donated to South Vancouver Family Place. The other half goes towards the growth and maintenance of the Apiary.
How can I help the bees?
There are lots of easy ways to help support the honey bees in our community.
You can help by:
• Putting out shallow dishes filled with stones as bee watering stations
• Putting bee guards on hummingbird feeders, or use bee-proof feeders
• Avoiding use of garden chemicals
• Planting gardens and balcony pots with bee-friendly plants
What are some bee-friendly plants?
If you’re interested in planting your garden or leaving plants on your balcony, here are some plants to consider to help the bees get their nutrients, based on when plants are in full bloom.
• Scilla fruit trees
• Any species of geranium
• Flowering herbs
• Styrax trees
• Any species of Tilia
• Joe Pye weed
• Salvia plants
• Sweet clover (Melilotus)
• Bluebeard shrub (Caryopteris)
• Bee Bee tree
• Rose of Sharon (Hibiscus syriacus)
• Bluebeard shrub
• Late flowering herbs