How I Got Started

I started Butterfly gardening many years ago. My yard has been a progression over the years, and has made many transformations. Twenty years ago I experienced Hurricane Andrew. My yard and house were destroyed. We decided not to replace the pool screening and open up the backyard and put in some landscaping. That was the official beginning of my love for gardening in South Florida. I added a beautiful water garden years ago, and have been adding host and larvae plants for pollinators, mostly for the butterfly, for as many years as I can remember. I had my yard certified as a Natural Habitat, through the National Wildlife Foundation. To have a natural habitat you need to provide and meet certain requirements: 1. Provide a food source, 2. Provide a water source, 3. Cover, 4. A place to raise young. I try not to use any pesticides in my yard. I vermicompost and recycle as many of my food scraps as possible. If I had more land I would have a huge compost bin to recycle all my yard cuttings. Basically, I try to lessen my carbon footprint on this earth. In my own little world or backyard I try to provide an ecosystem in my water garden, provide birdbaths, birdfeeders, hummingbird nectar sources, feeders, puddling areas, host plants and nectar plants for butterflies and other pollinators. I am hoping to raise everyone’s awareness of the importance of saving our Butterflies, Blooms & Bees. Without them our world and food source will be in trouble. I hope you all enjoy my journey. I am not a Master Gardener, or Master Beekeeper, an Entomologist, or Journalists. I am simply a Backyard Gardener who is trying to lessen her Carbon Footprint of this Earth.

I hope you enjoy my blogs.

Sunday, September 4, 2016

What’s all the Buzz at Broken Sound Club?



September is National Honey Month.  As a backyard beekeeper I celebrate this month, and give thanks to my bees for every drop of honey they give me.  Please follow me on FB and Instagram as I will post some recipes and be creating some new soaps for National Honey Month. 

Earlier in August I was invited to Broken Sound Club in Boca Raton, Florida.  I was invited because I write my blog about my beekeeping and adventures in my garden.  I am not sure if they really were aware that I am also a small backyard beekeeper.  None the less, I was invited to a very spectacular evening.  I had never heard of the Broken Sound Club, in Boca Raton, Florida. But after this wonderful evening I was quite impressed with what they are doing to raise the awareness of our environment and the importance of our bees. 

The Broken Sound Club is one of Boca Raton’s premier country club communities.   It is an award-winning, year-round, private golf and country club community.

So what is all the buzz at Broken Sound Club?????  They are celebrating National Honey Month and the Bee Postive Now campaign #beepositivenow.   I was so totally impressed with what they are doing at the country club.  It turns out that they are a totally sustainable property and practice sustainable gardening, composting and beekeeping.  They actually have 20 bee hives on the two golf courses.  I had no idea!  In fact I knew the beekeepers Sierra Malnove and Al Salopek, who are the president and vice president of Florida Backyard Beekeepers.  Florida Backyard Beekeepers Association is a non-profit 501c3 organization dedicated to the protection and preservation of honeybees and their keepers.  I am a proud member.

Broken Sound Club has 3000 members.  They serve 170,000 meals annually. Their golf courses host 55,000 rounds of golf.  They have 250 acres of Maintained Golf Course.  The country club produces 500,000 pounds annual average food waste and 1.2 million pounds annual average yard waste.  Because they are a forward-thinking organization they understand the benefits of Sustainability.   The General Manager and CEO is a gentlemen by the name of John Crean.  Please watch the video below about the Broken Sound Club. It is quite impressive.  He explains in the video that they started small by realizing how many plastic water bottles and Styrofoam cups they were using, and banned their use on the property.   This grew into a huge campaign and now they are totally environmentally friendly and sustainable.  They are recognized by such organizations as the Audubon Sanctuary, Golf Environment Organization (GEO), LEED Certified, the Environmental Protection Agency, and Best Management Practices Certified.  It is amazing that an organization like this had the vision and commitment to create such an environment.  I wish other large organizations and businesses were this environmentally aware. Other properties such as Trump National and the Biltmore in Coral Gables should be more aware of such amazing forward thinking.  


I was invited to a “Beeutiful” evening and chef’s table event to raise awareness of what they are doing at Broken Sound Club and their Bee Positive Now initiative.






Throughout the month of September, the country club will be hosting many different events to raise the awareness of the importance of our bees.  Here is a link to an agenda of all the different events they will be hosting for the community. #BrokenSoundClub #beesmartclub #boca4bees, #gothives, #beepositivenow, #bocabees #beethesolution #lovemyhoney #Queenbee

CLICK HERE TO VIEW BEESMART EVENTS CALENDAR

Some of the events and information available at the above link include:

·         BEE Yummy cooking classes and Chef’s Tables
·         ‘Bee Smart’ Lunch & Learns
·         ‘Bee Positive’ Tours for children’s groups and schools
·         Bee Smart interactive social media education campaign
·         Queen Bee Day at Bloomingdale’s at Town Center on Saturday September 17th. 
·         Bee Happy & Smart Day on Saturday September 24th at Boca Raton’s Children’s Museum

To quote the Broken Sound Club and their ‘Bee Positive Now’ campaign “Once you realize that one in three mouthfuls of what we eat is dependent upon these pollinators, you know just how critical it is that each of us to do our part to respect and protect these life-sustaining eco-heroes.”

Saturday, August 13, 2016

Let’s Celebrate National Honey Bee Day

National Honey Bee Day is August 20th this year.  As you know I have been a beekeeper for 5 years now.  For many years I have been gardening for pollinators of all kinds, i.e. butterflies, hummingbirds, bats, dragonflies and honeybees.  My goal has been to raise people’s awareness that our pollinators are in trouble.  This is mostly due, I feel, to pesticides and the destruction of the pollinators’ natural environment.  30% of the bee colonies have perished in the last 5 years.  The USDA now classifies rapid bee loss as an urgent crisis.  Pesticides specifically Neonicotinoids are to blame.  The US uses over 1 billion lbs. of them annually.  5.6 billion lbs. are used worldwide.  These pesticides are not only affecting honeybees but all pollinators.  Here is a link about planting pollinator friendly plants!


So what can you do to help our bees and celebrate National Honey Bee Day??  First you could support your local beekeeper.  Know the practices of your local beekeeper.  Not all are alike.  For example my yard is pesticide free.  I do not use pesticides in my yard or in my hives, so my honey is treatment free. I am a Top Bar Hive Beekeeper.  I think this is a very natural way to keep bees.  The bees actually build their own honeycomb.  I had my yard certified as a Natural Habitat. That means that I provide a habitat for birds, butterflies, frogs, and other wildlife by providing natural food sources, clean water, cover and places to raise young.  

2.  Plant some flowers and trees that attract pollinators to your garden.  Utilize plants that are native to your area. 
3.  Reduce or eliminate the impact of pesticides.
4.  Become involved with organizations that support and protect our pollinators. 


The Pollinator Partnership is an organization whose mission is to promote the health of pollinators, critical to food and ecosystems, through conservation, education, and research.

Here is an article by the Pollinator Partnership that talks about 7 Things You Can Do for Pollinators;  http://www.pollinator.org/7things.htm

The Pollinator Partnership also has a program called “The Million Pollinators Garden Challenge”
http://pollinator.org/million-pollinator-garden-challenge.htm; get involved this is a great challenge.  My garden is registered. 

I have been posting several articles for the last few weeks on my FB page, Reeny’s Butterflies Blooms and Bees.  Here are a few of the links to videos that talk about the importance of our bees.






Albert Einstein is quoted as saying that “If the bee disappeared off the face of the Earth, man would only have four years left to live.”  There is absolutely no evidence that Einstein actually ever said that, but it does make you think of the importance of our Honeybee.  Honey bees perform about 80% of all pollination worldwide.  Seventy out of the top 100 human food crops which supple about 90% of the world’s nutrition are pollinated by bees. 

Let’s all work together to SAVE OUR BEES!

Thursday, August 11, 2016

The Atala Butterfly

These pictures are of the Atala Butterfly, which I believe is endangered. I have had them in my yard for the last several years. They specifically need the Coontie Fern in order to lay their eggs. I cannot wait to re-landscape my yard!!!!!!!!!!



 




Friday, June 24, 2016

Guess who is going to be selling at the Pinecrest Farmer's Market??

I am so excited to announce that I have been accepted into the Pinecrest Farmers Market! This is a yearly farmers market located in the beautiful Pinecrest Gardens.

I will be there every Sunday starting this Sunday June 26th from 9-2pm!!!!!



You can visit the following link for additional information and location information:

http://www.greenmarketco-op.org/

Hope to see you there!

Sunday, April 24, 2016

I'll be back....

PLEASE NOTE: I will be out of town during the majority of the month of May due to the birth of my first granddaughter and will not be making any personal appearances
or shipping orders during this time.

I will continue to fulfill orders until I leave, and will update these notices when I know exact dates. Orders placed while I am out of town will be shipped as soon as possible upon my return.

I apologize for any inconvenience this may cause to my awesome followers & customers... I'll get back to blogging and sending out your orders ASAP!

Thank you for your understanding.

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