Apiarist John Graham presents the final HortTalk of the year, on the need for bees, at the Dunedin Botanic Garden Centre yesterday. Photo by Peter McIntosh.
The final HortTalk of the year at the Dunedin Botanic Garden
Centre yesterday had a sting in its tail.
Garden information services officer Clare Fraser said the
ninth free public lecture of 2012 concluded the eleventh year
of horticultural talks.
The lectures, on the first Friday of every month between
March and November, attracted between 30 and 120 people, Ms
The most popular talks were on sustainability,
self-sufficiency and working with nature, she said.
Otago Polytechnic horticulture lecturer Kim Thomas said
HortTalk was a joint effort between the botanic garden and
She presented the first talk in March on how the Spanish
Catalan architect Antoni Gaudi Cornet drew inspiration from
nature for his designs.
She and Ms Fraser had many ideas for next year's speakers and
would release a programme early next year, she said.
In yesterday's talk, apiarist John Graham told about 70
people about the importance of bees and how the insects
relied on humans for their survival.
"The only bees alive are the ones that we look after," he
Mr Graham shared tips from his 13 years of beekeeping
experience, including how apiarists who were angry should not
work on a hive because bees would sense the anger and sting,
Another tip was to direct a hive's flight path away from the
neighbours' clothesline to avoid the bees soiling their clean
Questions asked by members of the audience included why
bumblebees were so prevalent in Dunedin, how sardines could
be used to get rid of wasps and how vulnerable native bees
were to varroa mite.