The Garden Guide

Book: History of Garden Design and Gardening
Chapter: Chapter 5: Gardens in Asia, America, Africa, Australia

Bee keeping in Mexico

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910. Bees are cultivated in Mexico, and the species employed are without stings. The bees, the honeycomb, and the hive, Captain Hall observes, 'differ essentially from those in England. The hive is generally made out of a log of wood, from two to three feet long, and eight or ten inches in diameter, hollowed out, and closed at the ends by circular doors, cemented closely to the wood, but capable of being removed at pleasure. Some persons use cylindrical hives made of earthenware, instead of the clumsy apparatus of wood ; these are relieved by raised figures and circular rings, so as to form rather handsome ornaments in the veranda of a house, where they are suspended by cords from the roof, in the same manner that the wooden ones in the villages are hung to the caves of the cottages. On one side of the hive, half-way between the ends, there is a small hole made, just large enough for a loaded bee to enter, and shaded by a projection, to prevent the rain from trickling in. In this hole, generally representing the mouth of a man or some monster, the head of which is moulded in the clay of the hive, a bee is constantly stationed.' (Travels in Mexico.)