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Nannup is surrounded by tall mixed jarrah marri forests that were the mainstay of the logging and milling industry that led to the town's existence.
Each year brings a variable flowering of native ground covers, shrubs and trees. Wildflowers like orchids and trigger plants blossum in the Nyoongar Djilba season. This is followed in Kambarang by Jarrah flowering. The Jarrah flowering usually overlaps with Banksia flowering in Birak. Finally, Marri flowers during Bunuru. Very little flowers in Djeran and Makuru in the native forest.
A characteristic of the Jarrah (Eucalyptus marginata) and to some extent the Marri (Corymbia calophylla) is that they tend not to flower much (if at all) after a year of profuse flowering. Below is a log I update across the warmer months when the honey flows, noting the flowering from year to year near my hives. Good rain in the preceding season leads to better flowering. The 19/20 season was preceded by a very dry Djilba. Very little honey flowed at all - either near me or across southern Australia in general across the warm 19/20 seasons.
A natural question is whether or not my bees are displacing native pollinators within the forest. I draw some comfort from the observation that at least half the pollinators to a blossoming Jarrah is one of up to 80 other species, rather than a honey bee. There were large numbers of feral honey bees amongst the forest blossoms before I established my half-dozen hives. There still are when I take my hives away. Am I adding to native pollinator competition? I don't think so significantly.
It can also be observed that the reputation of Jarrah honey both within Australia and internationally is raising awareness of the importance of our southwest native forests, which will hopefully translate into political action to conserve more of them.
Or is this just self-serving hypocrisy on my part...?
Either way, beekeeping (I am definitely just a hobbyist) certainly gives me pleasure. It is a pleasure also to share the unique flavours of the Jarrah (think caramel) and Marri honey (sweeter and many people's favourite) with family, friends and colleagues.
I collect most of my honey via flow frames these days. I bought my first frames as part of the original funding drive by HoneyFlow. I like the frames given it results in less disturbed bees and the honey only needs a single cold filtering before pouring in a jar.
I sometimes sell a little via Gumtree.com.au when the bees and the Forest allow.