A swarm in May is worth a load of hay

A swarm in May is worth a load of hay

A swarm in May is worth a tonne of hay

The popular rhyme that indicated the value of a swarm of bees as the season progresses goes:

A swarm in May is worth a load of hay.

A swarm in June is worth a silver spoon.

A swarm in July isn’t worth a fly.

If we apply a literal translation to the rhyme, I owe Andres Collinson, an awesome natural beekeeper in Little Birch two tonnes of hay. He has given me two swarms in May 2021 so far.

Biodiversity – how many plant species on my plot

My goal is to have a minimum of 250 species. Here is what I have so far:

  1. Apples
  2. Ash
  3. Bamboo – Black Pearl  Yellow Bamboo
  4. Beeche
  5. Prunus Padus – Birthday Cherry
  6. Cherry 
  7. Cobnuts
  8. Cotinus Coggygria – Smoke tree
  9. Field Maple
  10. Grange
  11. Hawthorn
  12. Holly
  13. Leylandii
  14. Laurel
  15. Lemon
  16. Oak
  17. Parrotia Persica – Persian Ironwood
  18. Pear
  19. Plum
  20. Pear
  21. Scots pine tree
  22. Standard photinia tree
  23. Wild Plum
  24. Walnut – juglans regia
  25. Quince
  26. Thuja Plicata x 3 – Western RedCedar
  27. Tree from Dave Davice’s land


  1. Bay tree
  2. Black thorn – prunus spinosa
  3. Salix flamingo
  4. Blueberry
  5. Blackthorn
  6. Blackcurrant
  7. Buddleia – butterfly bush
  8. Brunnera ‘Alexander’s Great’
  9. Comfrey @@@@@@
  10. Cotoneaster
  11. Elderflower tree
  12. Rosa Canina – Dog Rose
  13. Dogwood
  14. Gooseberry
  15. Grapevine
  16. Gunnera Manicata
  1. Hazel
  2. Hebe
  3. Honeysuckle
  4. Ivy
  5. Monarda Didyma
  6. Raspberry 
  7. Rododendron
  8. Rosehip
  9. Lilac
  10. Roses
  11. Strawberries
  12. Willow


  1. Daffodils
  2. Snowdrops
  3. Tulips
  4. Winter aconite (Heranthis hyemalis


  1.  Majoran
  2. Mint
  3. Sage
  4. Rosemary
  5. Rhubarb
  6. Thyme


  1.  Dandelion
  2. Buttercups
  3. lacy phacelia


  1. Water lily
  2. Lesser bulrush Typha angustifolia brown – Marsh plant, Water plant
  3.  Caltha palustris polypetela
  4. Yellow iris pseudacorus yellow – Marsh plant, waterside plant
  5. Stratiotes aloides – Water Soldier
Welcome to The Hive

Welcome to The Hive

Welcome to The Hive and  thank you for stopping by.  This website is documentation of my journey into living a low impact and more sustainable lifestyle. This was a journey I meant to start many years ago. Like most people, when faced with taking a radically different path to the one they have known all their lives, they find reasons and excuses to procrastinate and delay making such a big life changing decision.

One of my excuses was that I don’t have enough time, no enough money, enough expertise etc. Partly galvanised into action by the worldwide pandemic of 2020 and inspired by the ancient Chinese proverb “a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step meaning”, Even if that step is a hesitant and unsteady one, you journey has begun. In my case, my journey probably started by going in the wrong direction, but now that I have started the journey, it is easy to head in the right direction, once I have started than not started at all. Waiting for a mythical perfect time to start, delay the journey.

I hope you will find one or two useful information to take away from my journey into a low impact and sustainable lifestyle. If you started the journey before and have loads more experience, I would be grateful if you share your experience with me, by pointing me in the right direction where I am going wrong.