Oregon bee keepers

I will be a new bee keeper spring of 2016 after my flow hive arrives in Dec! Looking for any and all good advise about the flow hive and bee keeping in general! Will be picking up some books from the library this week!


New bee keeper here!! On the same route as you @QueenB. Flow hive arrives in December, going to cross my fingers for a spring swarm and a healthy one at that!


Ditto. Looking to join the local Portland Beekeeping Assoc. also I picked up 2 books at Powells, “The Backyard Beekeeper: An Absolute Beginner’s Guide to Keeping Bees in Your Yard and Garden” and “First Lessons in Beekeeping”. Looking forward to getting my Flow on :wink:

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I hear that’s a great book waiting in it from the library now! Good luck can’t wait to hear how we all do!

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Hi, I guess we are all new here! I am a YouTube-Educated beekeeper who has owned a hive for 12 whole days. I learned about Flow Hives a little late but will order one when they are taking orders again. For now I’m growing my one hive into two so that they’re big and strong enough that at least one of them makes it through the winter. Next Spring will be for honey harvesting!

I live just across the river from Portland in Ridgefield, Washington, but all of the Washington folks are up in Seattle so you all are closer to me. I went to my first local Bee Association meeting and learned this right away: there are as many opinions about how to do things as there are beekeepers. Maybe more!

So since I’m a beekeeper now, I will share with you what I learned this week. Keep in mind we purchased an entire hive - two “deeps” full of bees, pollen, and honey. About 50,000. We believe they are Italians, but it’s hard to tell and they say you’d have to test them to know for sure. But we didn’t start with a kit or a nuc. We jumped right in. And that’s been fun!

(1) When you take apart a box to inspect it for the first time, it’s really quite hard to tell what you’re looking at! I recommend watching YouTube videos so that you can understand what you’re going to be seeing. Even then it’s kind of hard, but so fascinating!

(2) Slow, smooth movements are your friend. There were four of us - my two kids 10 and 12 were literally in ski gear to cover their faces - and we were barely bothered. We did use smoke, but not too much. Dried pine needles work great, btw. Much better than dried grass.

(3) We bought a couple of items that were life-savers and I recommend the investment. A “frame grip” tool helps you grab the frames ($7.50 http://www.bee-outside.com/framegrip.aspx) and is really great after your bees seal the frames to your box with glue-like propolis and your hive tool just isn’t doing the trick. A tool that lets you hang the frames on the side of the box ($20 http://www.bee-outside.com/frameholder-stainlesssteel.aspx) keeps the bees from crawling up your pantlegs! And of course, the smoker keeps them all chilled out ($27 http://www.bee-outside.com/smoker4x7.aspx). We got everything at Ruhl Bee, but these are the online links in case you are not close enough to go to their shop.

Hope this helps you guys! Excited to hear who gets their flow hive first and how it goes!


Thx Laurie for the info and links. And I think you can order Flow Frames directly form the Indiegogo site now.

Hi everyone! I too will be starting my new hive this spring (2016)! Cant wait! What kind of bees is everyone starting with? and what caused you to pick that kind?

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Mitchell from Grants Pass, Oregon. Looking for Flow beekeepers in Southern Oregon. I will receive my Flow hive in February.


Hey there fellow Oregonians! I should be getting my Flow Hive in the next month or two and crosses fingers hope to get started this spring. I’m in central Oregon!


Hey all, I am located in Dallas, Oregon. Just got my hive parts and still need to put them together. I feel like I am behind, but when I looked into ordering a nuc, the delivery dates are April and May, so I guess I’ll be ok.

glad to be here, looking forward to a great (new) adventure!

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Did you get your name on their list? Just wanted to make sure that you don’t wait until April or May to order, because that would likely be way too late! :disappointed_relieved:

I ordered 2 nucs from a supplier near me in early November last year, and the guy had already sold out of March delivery dates. Of course, there are other ways to get bees, but nucs are such a nice easy way to start.


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yikes… nope i haven’t officially ordered. I am just getting into the grove of doing this now… guess i had better start moving a bit faster!

what type of bees did you get?

I am leaning towards a nuc from Old Sol with a survivor queen. but they also suggest their Caucasion queens for a super hygienic hive.

I can be “time challenged” so the more resistance to mites and other problems the bees have, the better off we all will be.

My nucs are 5 frames each of Italian VSH (Varroa Sensitive Hygiene), naturally-raised by a local beekeeper (and member of my local bee club). This will be my first time buying bees from him, but he is a nice guy, and he has a great reputation too. The VSH strain means that the bees have strong hygienic behavior, and will throw out diseased larvae earlier than other bees. They also tend to keep the hive a bit cleaner overall. This is a pretty good article about the concept:

You may not want to get Italians in Oregon. I am in Southern California, so they do great here. There are VSH strains of Carniolans, Russians and others too, which might be better suited to your local climate.

Good luck, and get your deposit down ASAP! :slight_smile:

I just had a look at Old Sol’s web site. They seem to have a very good approach. Do you know any locals who have used them?


P.S. They are now listing May as the earliest pickup date for 5 frame nucs!

I know no one yet in the bee keeping community. Oh that is not true. I guess I have a friend with a hive, but we haven’t talked about it specifically (yet). she is a beginner and has had several years of failure. I think she is “farming” her hive duties out to someone else this year.

I think I’ll just jump in and get one ordered from Old Sol. . No other local producer says anything about resistance or hygiene traits at all. The Old Sol folks seem to be the only ones concentrating on that. I am not far from one of their delivery sites, so it would be easy enough to pick them up. Now. to pick which type to go with. I like the things about both breeds they offer. hmm. I’ll stew on that today, while I am out doing farm chores.

Holger in Lake Oswego. I know zip about beekeeping, but am set to learn and start a hive this spring.

If there is someone else nearby, I’d be interested in connecting.

You should check out Ruhl Bee Supply in Wilsonville. We went to a half day beginners class there at the end of January. It was well worth the time and cost. They have another one coming up on 2/27/16.

Also, for anyone on the Oregon coast between Lincoln City and Yachts, the Central Coast Bee Keepers Association has just started up. They meet at the library in Newport on the last Wednesday of each month at 6:30pm.

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So now that a lot of us have probably got our hives by now, have any of you run into problems with local beekeeper groups with your Flow Hive?
I, myself, am unable to begin my bees due to living in a rental, however, I want to join my local beekeeping club - I am afraid of the lash out that I see online about the Flow Hive. We know it can be great, but, they seem to be really narrow minded.

There are many discussions on this forum about that subject. Just search a little and you will find plenty! :blush:

Meanwhile, this thread came up in the last 24 hours:

I would advise, join the club, tell them you want to get into keeping bees in a standard 8-frame Langstroth hive (which is what the Flow hive is based on), and don’t say Flow until they know you better! :wink: Meanwhile you can learn about bees and local practices, all of which will apply to the Flow hive too. Use the local knowledge, it can be very helpful.

I know there are plenty, but each State and Locations of groups could be different in the way that they accept and view this particular subject, so I was hoping to get a fellow Oregonian’s experience on the matter.

I do believe that is how I will attempt to approach the issue, but I do have a big mouth and am terrible at keeping even my own secrets! lol