Posts Tagged ‘bees’

this saturday: brooklyn homesteader’s backyard homesteading bootcamp

April 2, 2012

With Spring now upon us, the time is ripe to dig in and start growing! Learn how to veggie garden, keep chickens & bees, homebrew, and so much more this Saturday with Meg Paska of Brooklyn Honey & Brooklyn Homesteader. I’ll be leading an afternoon session on making your own body care goods and cleaning solutions (including laundry soap!).

Come on out and get dirty, and then get clean!

Brooklyn Homesteader’s Backyard Homesteading Bootcamp (Spring 2012)

Saturday, April 7, 2012 from 9 AM to 5 PM

Greenpoint, Brooklyn

Sign up on EventBrite

Ever wanted to learn how to grow, make and preserve your own food in a small space but need some hands-on guidance to do so?

Join Meg Paska, the “Brooklyn Homesteader“, on her own turf as she teaches you how to raise chickens, keep bees, grow a garden, compost, forage, can, pickle, preserve and homebrew all from her tiny Greenpoint homestead.

Coffee and homemade donuts will be served in the morning before the class commences.

It will tentatively go as follows:

-Building Raised Beds and Planning a Vegetable Garden

-Composting

-Chickens 101

-Food Preservation (Freezing, Drying, Canning, Fermentation)

LUNCH!

-Beekeeping 101

-Wild Edibles

-Homebrewing basics

-DIY Home and Body Care

WIND DOWN with local beers and Q&A

Attendees will get hands on experience in all aspects of the above mentioned topics and will leave with care packages of assorted goodies! (Books on the subjects covered, seeds, canned and pickled items from the class, etc)

Please email Megan@BrooklynHomesteader.com with any questions.

Students are expected to bring notepads and pens, dress in light color clothes, be able to climb ladders and are willing to sign a waiver, as we will be getting up close and personal with stinging, venomous insects, boiling hot jars of food and eating weeds from the nearby park.

All other materials are included in the cost of the class.

Sign up here!

Meg Paska is a writer, Huffington Post blogger and instructor at such fine institutions as The New York Botanical Gardens and Third Ward. She currently manages apiaries for hospitality groups and farms in the NY area and has a book on Urban Beekeeping due out on Chronicle Books in early 2013.

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upcoming events at 388 atlantic

January 25, 2010

There’s a budding new meeting space in Brooklyn. It’s at 388 Atlantic Avenue (between Hoyt & Bond) and there are some great events happening that I thought you should know about…

388 Atlantic Ave – Brooklyn – closest to A, C & G, but near the B, M, Q, R, 2, 3, 4, 5, and F

Andrew Faust Ecological Literacy vs. Environmental Education
Tuesday, January 26 (tomorrow!)
7-9 pm
Suggested donation: $10

We need to embrace our responsibility for the well-being of each other and the entire web of life. This new worldview requires a whole new philosophy of education.

homebiome.com

Beekeeping: Find out how to get ready for spring; making it legal
Saturday, January 30
1:30-3:30 pm
Suggested donation: $10

John Howe, founder of the Brooklyn Bee, lives in Fort Greene where he has three beehives on his roof. The bees make honey that John sells; he also makes soap, lip balm and candles from beeswax. Come learn how to keep bees. Plus, this is the week that the City Council holds hearings to legalize beekeeping in NYC (Wednesday, Feb 3). Just Food will speak briefly about the legislation and what we can do to make sure it passes.

thebrooklynbee.com

Staying Healthy through the Seasons: Thriving in Winter Workshop
Sunday, January 31
3-5pm *optional potluck after
“recommended exchange”: $10-15

Curious about staying healthy this winter? Come learn tips for how to live in balance during the cold winter days with food, yoga, and herbs!
In this workshop we will discuss natural cold and flu prevention and care, eating in balance with the seasons and with your Ayurvedic constitution. Learn cheap recipes and how to eat well, fresh and local during the dreary winter months. Abby will teach you some great yoga poses to keep your energy up and blood flowing and Liz will enliven your spirits with great herbal teas and foods.
Come join Abby Paloma and Liz Blake for an educational and fun gathering!
bring a mug for tea!

behivethrives.com

Also, mark your calendar for the New York premiere of an inspiring new film:

The Turning Point: a film about the importance of local networks and connections
Friday, February 19
7-9 pm (film is 45 minutes; discussion afterwards)
Suggested donation: $10

From Findhorn, Scotland, a positive and inspiring film about our transition to a low carbon future. Featuring visionary leaders and pioneers in the fields of Human Ecology and Global Transition, this film takes an inspiring look at our potential to create a life-sustaining society as we face the twin challenges of Peak Oil and Climate Change. “The combination of serious, funny and beautiful was perfect!”

theturningpointfilm.co.uk

forbidden sweetness

August 11, 2009

As we rebel against the current crappy industrialized food system, and as more & more people migrate to big cities, urban agriculture is going to become more & more prevalent. And where would a successful urbanized & localized agricultural system be without pollinators?

By pollinators in this case, I’m strictly talking bees.

Unlike other cities across the nation, beekeeping is still illegal in NYC. Despite that little obstacle, it’s becoming increasingly popular, especially in Brooklyn.

Here’s a great little video featuring some Brooklyn restaurateurs who are in the business of bees:

Brooklyn’s Urban Beekeepers: Breaking The Law For The Planet (Part I) from SkeeterNYC on Vimeo.

Read more about the work being done to legalize beekeeping.

Sign the petition to legalize the bees.

standing up for bees

June 24, 2009


[Image: Green Brooklyn]

There’s a movement happening in this city right now to develop a strong localized food system. Urban farms, community gardens, backyards, and rooftops are the sites for productive vegetable gardens, chicken coops, and even rabbit raising. People who care about food and where it comes from are going to great lengths to find space to grow. And some are even breaking the law to ensure greater success of these urban crops. They’re illegally keeping bees.

A matter of sustainability
In places like Chicago, San Francisco, and Atlanta, beekeeping is considered part of the city’s long-term sustainability plan. Bees are even kept in the White House garden. But in this city, according to sustainable food advocacy group Just Food,

The New York City Health Code under Section 161.01 prohibits the possession, keeping, harboring and selling of ‘wild animals.’ This ban’s listing of ‘all venomous insects’ includes bees and in doing so outlaws beekeeping.

The perceived risk (allergies, swarming) by few is limiting opportunities for many.

Without bees, we’d all have less food. Einstein didn’t say this, but it’s still rings true to an extent,

If the bee disappears from the surface of the earth, man would have no more than four years to live.

In a post on The Daily Green (2007),

Of about 240,000 flowering plants in North America, three quarters require the pollination of a bee, bird, bat or other animal or insect in order to bear fruit. Since many of our food crops – with the exception of grains – are imports, the imported honey bee is key to our food supply. Beyond that, no other pollinator can be collected, moved and unleashed to pollinate fields of crops like commercial beekeepers can do with honey bee colonies.

So losing bees would have repercussions throughout the food supply chain.


Legalize the bees!
In February, Councilman David Yassky (D–Brooklyn Heights) introduced legislation to lift the ban on beekeeping. And yesterday he spoke at a press conference in front of city hall backed by Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer (not “Stinger” as he joked), Executive Director of Just Food Jackie Berger, other Just Food members, beekeepers, urban farmers, and concerned citizens (that would be me).


[David Yassky, Scott Stringer, Deborah Romano, and a swarm of press]

We were all there not just in support of lifting the ban on beekeeping, but to support Park Slope resident Deborah Romano who received a fine for beekeeping and was ordered to remove her hive. Talking about the complaint brought against her, Deborah told the AP yesterday,

“I don’t know why (that neighbor) did it,” she said at the rally. “But my guess is that it probably was a combination of ignorance and fear. They didn’t understand how vital bees are to our very existence on the planet, and a more livable existence in NYC. They probably didn’t realize that honeybees and other pollinating insects are more endangered than dangerous.”

Bees work for me
As someone who uses honey on a daily basis, I’d prefer if the sweet nectar came from right here in Brooklyn than be shipped in from upstate or beyond. I also prefer beeswax candles to paraffin, a petroleum byproduct, or even soy, which is most likely a genetically modified crop.

If we could produce these items locally, it would boost our economy, improve the local food production system, provide the community with products to be proud of, and offer beekeepers the peace of mind that performing their craft brings.

NYC beekeeping in the news and blogosphere

NYC beekeeping resources

It’s Pollinator Week!
And there are still some fun events to partake in:

Hidden Hives Tour & Mead Tasting
@ Jimmy’s No. 43
Thu 6/25

Honey Fest
@ Union Square Greenmarket
Fri 6/26

Honey Tasting
@ The Unfancy Food Show
Sun 6/28

…And more!

For more info visit: www.justfood.org/bees

food rules: events coming (really) soon!

June 9, 2009

Food. We can’t live without it. This fact is especially clear to two disparate groups: the impoverished and the powerful (i.e., big agro-biz). And because of this (and other reasons), our current food system is pretty messed up. Learn how you can get involved by supporting local food and getting informed with these events, from film screenings to bee celebrating.


Brooklyn Food Coalition neighborhood meetings
Starting Wednesday, June 10

The recent Brooklyn Food Conference held in Park Slope Brooklyn, a wildly successful event brimming with valuable information on how to secure healthy food for all has spawned these neighborhood gatherings to help people get involved in food policy and other food-related action. Find out if your neighborhood is hosting one and when it’s happening at the BFC website.

Food, Inc. (the film)
Wednesday, June 10
@ Bell House

An eye-opening look at the current state of the creation of modern food. This looks like a must see, for sure. Too bad it’s happening at the same time as my neighborhood BFC meeting!
Here’s a little preview:

Watch the official trailer
Get tickets
[via Brooklyn Based]

We Feed The World (another film)
Thursday, June 11
@ The Be-Hive
(55 Bethune St #215)

$10.00 suggested donation
Doors Open at 6:30 pm, screening begins at 7pm
Bring a dish for a Potluck Supper!
Stay for the discussion after the film

In case one disturbing food film isn’t enough for you – A sobering portrait of the people who define the contemporary food industry, where the constant pursuit of profit takes precedence over the health of the workers, the hungry & the environment. (Austria-96 min)

The trailer is in German, but you’ll get the idea:

Learn more about the event here.

NB – If you can’t make it to the screening, this one’s on DVD, and I think the whole movie is available online here.

Celebrate Pollinator Week
with Just Food
Monday, June 22 to Sunday, June 28

In honor of our hard-working, winged friends, Just Food and the Pollinator Week Planning Committee are pulling together a whole series of sweet events in order to raise awareness and support for urban beekeeping. We hope you’ll join us:

Beekeepers Ball
Monday, June 22
Water Taxi Beach – South Street Seaport
(Pier 17 – 89 South St)
I’m getting buzzed just thinking about it (ha!)…
A not-to-be missed evening of sweetness and buzz… Indulge in the nectar of honey-infused cocktails and hors d’oeuvres and waggle dance the night away.
Find out more and get your tickets here.

New York Nectar
All week long
Mmmmm, I’m getting hungry!
Signature Pollinator Week dishes & drinks featuring local honey at New York’s favorite restaurants, including: Back 40, Bobo, Jimmy’s No. 43, Mae Mae Cafe, Palo Santo, Rose Water, Savoy and many more!

Honey Fest
Friday, June 26
@Union Square
A full day of fun at Union Square Greenmarket! Come enjoy tastings, demonstrations, and costumed antics in the park – and don’t forget to pick up some local honey while you’re there!

And stay tuned – there’s more to come!
Sign up for Just Food updates to stay in the loop.


Sharecropper
All summer long
Throughout the city
An experiment in urban agriculture…

Sharecropper invites you to participate in this public art project and micro farming installation by artist Leah Gauthier for one growing season in New York City, Summer 2009. Leah will be using organic growing methods to plant rare and endangered heirloom vegetables and herbs, and to cultivate wild edibles on 17 parcels of donated land or growing spaces located in each of the five boroughs. A portion of the harvest will be shared with local soup kitchens, and series of public programming, including urban farming panel discussions, art happenings, and cooking performances around the city are being planned. This is a personal journey exploring agricultural plant matter and wild edibles as sculptural material, community building through growing and cooking food, re-imagining land use, and re-incorporating agrarian sensibilities and simplicity into modern life.

Read more about this local harvest at Brooklyn Based and Inhabitat.

a philly in the white house garden

June 9, 2009

Just watched this great little vid (via elephant journal, via Huffington Post) featuring Ryan Howard of the Philadelphia Phillies and of course, Sam Kass, the White House Chef. What a great way to promote organic gardening and closing the loop with composting. Surely, Mr. Howard is someone many people look up to (literally). Keep spreading the word…

earth day events from just food

April 22, 2009

In keeping with the Earth Day theme today, here are some more ways to get involved – through education – from local food advocacy group Just Food.

Garden Maintenance, Planting Techniques and Growing for Market: April 22, 6-8pm, East New York Farms! 613 New Lots Ave corner of Schenck Ave, Brooklyn

Cooking demonstrations and legalize beekeeping outreach at the Earth Fair 2009: April 24-25, Grand Central Terminal, Vanderbilt Hall (inside) and 42nd Street and Vanderbilt Avenue (outside)

McKinley’s Children’s Garden Earth Day Celebrations’ Seed Saving Workshop: April 25, 12-1pm McKinley’s Children’s Garden, 108-56 Union Hall Street at 109th Avenue, Jamaica, Queens

Garden Planning: April 25, 1-3pm Hattie Carthan Community Garden 654 Lafayette Ave at Clifton, Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn And check out Just Food board member and La Familia Verde Garden Coalition member Karen Washington talk about turning a vacant lot into a thriving community garden at Mayor Bloomberg’s new volunteerism project, NYC Service. What step will you take this Earth Day for food justice?! Share your commitments/ideas.

buzzin’ and a-bumblin’

April 9, 2009

I feel all abuzz and I’m going to thank the lovefast for it.

I’m also feeling buzzed ’cause the bees in NYC are getting some new attention. I’ve mentioned before that beekeeping is illegal in this crazy city… even pointed readers in the direction of a petition to make raising the little pollinators legal.

Well Brooklyn Based blog (3 bees!) has done me one better. Read all about the secret beekeeping societies popping up in NYC — started, of course, in the bee-lovin’ borough of Brooklyn! And find out how you can learn to be a beekeeper and reap the benefits of a honey harvest from your very own hush-hush hive.

Thanks, Brooklyn Based!