During the last year, the NFWI has worked hard to help persuade the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs that a joined-up, comprehensive Bee Action Plan is needed if we are to tackle bee decline effectively. The Plan is currently out for public consultation, providing a key opportunity to tell government what should be improved, as well as remind them that the WI and wider public are behind an ambitious pollinator strategy that will make a real difference to bees in the long term.
Here’s what you can do to help:
- Sow seeds for bees. Plant a range of flowers so that bees can have access to pollen from spring to late summer.
- Support local honey. There’s a lot of beautiful local Cornish out there! Not only does it taste delicious, it’s also reputed to help prevent hayfever
- Send a postcard to the Minister for Bees. If you didn’t get one at last night’s meeting, we can get more! Email us on firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you prefer your bees in real life, why not go on the CFWI ‘A Day at an Aviary’ event at Lanhearne Aviary near St Eval in June? You’ll have a chance to don a bee suit and visit some working hives! The cost is £17 per person. See Alison or email us on email@example.com if you’d like to put your name down. The deadline is 7 May.
Finally, why not try a recipe using honey?
Granola is like a slightly sweetened roasted muesli, which gives it a lot more crunch and chew, as well as some baked nuttiness. It’s the honey that really brings this together: as well as being a preferable form of sweetener, it binds the ingredients to make fun clusters. Try blossom or heather honey for a proper taste of the British countryside in your breakfast bowl. Once you’ve made your own granola there’s no going back to shop-bought.
(Makes around 1kg)
60ml sunflower or groundnut oil
250g rolled oats
150g sunflower seeds
100g dried apricots
100g wheat germ
1 Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/gas mark 4.
2 Pour the honey and oil into a pan and heat gently until the honey has melted.
3 In a bowl, mix the oats, bran and sunflower seeds, then pour on the liquid from the pan and mix well. Spread out on a big baking tray.
4 Roast for 20-25 minutes, turning everything three or four times, then leave to cool.
5 Meanwhile, roast the hazelnuts until they turn a golden brown (which takes about 10 minutes), then roughly chop, along with the dates and apricots.
6 When cool, mix everything together with the wheatgerm and sultanas. Store in an air‑tight container; lasts for about a month.
Recipe from The Guardian, 9 February 2013.
Keep the honeybee buzz going!