About the Author

Kristi Cook

Kristi Cook lives in Arkansas where every year brings something new to her family’s journey for a more sustainable lifestyle. She keeps a flock of laying hens, dairy goats, a rapidly growing apiary, a large garden, and more. When she’s not busy with the critters and veggies, you can find her sharing sustainable living skills through her workshops, articles, and blog at tenderheartshomestead.com.
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Articles by Kristi Cook

Conduct an Alcohol Wash for Varroa Mite Monitoring
June 9, 2022 · · Health & Pests

Of the many techniques, the alcohol wash for varroa mite counts is currently considered the most accurate and is both fast and simple after a bit of practice.

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Are Queen Excluders a Good Idea?

If you enjoy a good debate, ask 10 beekeepers what they think about queen excluders. As is typical in the beekeeping community, within seconds, you’ll receive 10 different answers.

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Natural versus Grafted Queen Rearing
June 2, 2022 · · Beekeeping 101

Queen rearing can be as simple or as complex as the beekeeper chooses. Grafting queen bees and natural rearing are the two more common methods.

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The Vital Role the Drone Plays in the Beehive
May 24, 2022 · · Beekeeping 101

The most sustainable manner of keeping bees requires Beeks to learn skills beyond hive inspection, feeding regimens, and pest control. Learning to create splits and raise queens are, without a doubt, the most sustainable manner of reducing costs.

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Strange Creatures
May 20, 2022 · · Health & Pests

What about all those strange creatures lurking about the bee yard? Here’s a little primer on which creatures to keep a watch out for.

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When Should I Perform the First Mite Check and Treatment?

A key time for getting a jump on varroa is when the colony is broodless, since any mites present will be in a phoretic state rather than hiding inside capped brood.

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Types of Comb and What They Tell Us About Our Bees
April 17, 2022 · · Beekeeping 101

Understanding the various types of comb and how bees utilize each type of comb within the hive is just one element of keeping bees healthy and productive all season long.

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Pollinator Haven
March 25, 2022 · · Plants & Pollination

No matter where we live, pollinators play an integral role in the success of our gardens and the success of the overall ecosystem. As their populations continue to decline, we can ensure their recovery by providing pesticide-free food sources, adequate shelter, and dependable water.

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Wildflowers for Pollinators/Bees
March 13, 2022 · · Plants & Pollination

While it is true that much of beekeeping is far from our control, providing a local food source in the form of wildflowers for pollinators is doable with a little planning.

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Which Garden Veggies Do Bees Pollinate?
February 13, 2022 · · Plants & Pollination

Even if we lose all of our honeybees, we will not, as a nation nor as mankind, starve to death. However, because roughly a third of the food we eat requires bees for pollination, we will be forced to greatly modify our food expectations.

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