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happy winter solstice from apoidea studio! 2015 has been an intense year from many perspectives.  Bee on the lookout around Valentine's Day for apoidea's anniversary newsletter featuring reflections on the wonderful diversity of connections the bees brought to us this year, from Pittsburgh's urban food production renaissance to beekeeping in the Great Plains (North Dakota & Minnesota) and clear over to Kenya, Africa.  We'll also have upcoming 2016 maker workshops, special Valentine's honey infusions, native plant recommendations, spring nature outings and 2016 beekeeping season preparation.  The days will be getting longer soon but a good bit of winter chill is needed as part of the annual northern climate cycle to keep plant and bee pests in check before spring warm-up!   Cold can be a very good thing ecologically.  It's all about balance. 

special invite solstice event

B.Y.O. (Build Your Own) Custom Gift Set

This coming Monday evening, December 21, 2015, apoidea apiary will be open by special invite to friends requesting to purchase some limited honeys we've been infusing with organic herbs for the last few months. We are stocked up with extra bee-beneficial seed packs and apoidea's own beeswax balms to make up custom gift sets on the spot, if desired.  Some of the seasonal infusions available will include Good Food Award winning Rosemary Knotweed, Santa Spank, Vanilla Bean + Lavender, Citrus Chipotle Chili, Jalapeno, Candy Apple and raw honey harvested from apoidea's nine bee yards all over the Pittsburgh Metro Area.   Space is limited.  Individual appointments on 12/22 and 12/23 are possible as well. Please RSVP with Christina at

honey buzz about the Burgh
Apoidea's seasonal artisan honey can now be found in a number of select locations in the Greater Pittsburgh Area including:  Whole Foods Wexford, Olive & Marlowe, Staghorn Cafe, Batch, East End Food Coop, Una Biologicals, Gryphon's Tea, Farm Truck Foods and Lengel Brothers at the PPMAround Valentine's Day, special Ayurvedic herbal infused honeys will be available at The Yoga Hive, as well.
honey drizzled stuffed dates
One easy, elegant and healthy hor d'oeuvres plate to serve up during the holidays is stuffed dates.  We like to stuff pitted dates with either mascarpone or whipped cream cheese then top them with a light drizzle of Rosemary Knotweed or Santa Spank infused honeys just before serving.  For an added kick, the dates can be "spiked" by soaking them in a brandy syrup a couple days before stuffing. 
deck the garden with bushes of holly
Ilex opaca, the American holly, is a hardy evergreen species native to the eastern and south-central US.  The distinctive red berries used to decorate holiday wreaths are thanks to the hard pollination work of bees!  Holly provides a great spring and fall nectar source for honey bees, in particular, so consider incorporating male and female varieties of this beautiful shrub into your Western Pennsylvania garden!
december sketch hike
Date/Time: December 26 : 10:00am -12:00 pm
Hike Location: Beechwood Farms
(Meet at 10:00 am at Apoidea Apiary to carpool)
Duration: Easy 2-3 mile hike paced to stop and quick sketch winter plant species.  Loose contour sketching is the emphasis to keep moving during colder weather.  Pen & ink, graphite or color pencil recommended drawing media.  Weather Pending! RSVP to .
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