About the Author

Steph Merkle

Steph Merkle is the Digital Content & Community Director for Countrysde. She tends to her raised bed gardens, raises a mixed flock of egg layers, and keeps honey bees on her four acres in southeastern Wisconsin. As a Colorado native, Steph spent her childhood in the remote San Luis Valley, the largest agricultural alpine valley in the United States. Growing up in the valley made Steph appreciate the scarcity of water in a semi-arid climate and the mounting demands on this limited resource. Steph spent her summers working as a landscaper focused on xeriscaping practices as well as lending a hand on her grandparents’ tree nursery. Steph enjoys traveling as far and wide as her pocketbook allows and spending time with her husband and two young children.
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Articles by Steph Merkle

You’re Invited to Become a Member of Backyard Beekeeping

We have some EXCITING news to share! There is something new in our community … introducing the brand-new Backyard Beekeeping Membership and Magazine!

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How to Harvest Honey — Video Tutorial

In this video tutorial from Backyard Beekeeping and Miller Bee Supply, we’ll take you through the basics steps of harvesting and extracting your honey.

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How do I Configure My Top Bar Hive?

If your top bar hive opens on the side (cold-way configuration, like a Langstroth), putting the empty brood frames right in the center will work fine.

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Take Our Beekeeping Survey
April 7, 2021 · · Beekeeping

We need your help! Complete our short survey and you’ll be entered to win a $50 gift card to our bookstore.

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How to Install Package Bees in a Langstroth Hive
January 31, 2021 · · Beekeeping 101

Learning how to install package bees isn’t all that difficult, but if you are new to beekeeping, it can be helpful to see the process from start to finish. In this video tutorial, we’ll take you through the basic steps of installing your new honey bees in a Langstroth hive.

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Win a Membership to Backyard Beekeeping
January 25, 2021 · · Giveaways

Enter to win a Digital Plus Membership to Backyard Beekeeping — $54.97 value. We’ll pick 4 winners, a new winner each week through August 29!

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How to Make Beeswax Candles
November 17, 2020 · · Honey & Beeswax

Giving homemade holiday gifts is our family tradition. One of my favorite homemade gifts to give is homemade beeswax candles. They are easy, inexpensive, and perfect for neighbors, friends, teachers, and anyone you want to spread cheer to.

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How to Add Wax Foundation to An Assembled Frame
August 19, 2020 · · Hives & Equipment

Today we’ll demonstrate how to add wax foundation to an assembled frame. Although the process is fairly simple, it’s easy to get tripped up without the basic steps.

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How to Light a Bee Smoker
July 4, 2020 · · Hives & Equipment

The first goal is to get a nice flame on the shavings. That takes some time and some patience. Fan the fire to build up the flame. Be careful, you don’t want to get burned.

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Are My Bees Too Hot?

Add to Favorites Dave writes: I’m new to beekeeping. My bees seem hot in this 90+ weather, they are bearding a lot. What are your suggestions for keeping them cool? I have a …

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