For about a year now I've been thinking about harvesting honey. We eat a lot of honey between cereal, tea, salad dressing, and making mead -- which I admit takes the majority of it. Still, having our own hive would be nice. Not to mention great for the girls and local scouts and students who would more than likely benefit.
I love going into the classrooms and teaching the students about Maple Sugaring. I love it when their eyes get saucer-wide when they realize you don't have to live in Vermont to make syrup. I love taking the tally after the taste test: Which do you like best light or dark? Last year we got the opinions of 124 students. Their overall winner is the dark; mine too. (The last jar in our cabinet is a very light syrup from last year.)
Over the New Year I had the opportunity to do a taste test between Vermont and homemade pure Maple Syrup. Both were dark, so I didn't think there would be much of a difference. There was. The Vermont best was peppery. And our own was buttery and seemed sweeter. Both had good maple flavor but the Vermont made had a stronger maple sense that lasted longer on the tongue. Both tasted great on pancakes. And isn't that what counts the most?
But back to bees, here is the link for a starter kit. I'm still thinking about it.