I am in the process of setting up a new apiary.  I am the leaseholder on a half hectare plot of land which is located on the remote Berkshire Downs. (the video below explains everything)

The plot hasn’t been used for years.  It is overgrown with tall grass, thistles, nettles, head height bramble and saplings.  

Scythe resting on tree. The scythe has an aluminium swath and a thirty inch blade. #beehiveyourself #WantageHoney #AmericanScythe
Scythe resting on tree

In some ways the plot exceeds my beekeeping needs but it does present me with an opportunity to create a meadow.  I imagine with anticipation the polyfloral taste of meadow honey and I just know the effort will be worth it.

The problem is how to tame my plot into more grassland than young woodland.  Cattle could be an answer but I have no experience of such husbandry and I have no time for learning.

A chicken tractor might be an option but I am not able to visit the plot everyday.

A mowing machine might be an option but it would need an initial expense, ongoing fuel and maintenance needs.

Yet, if I cast my mind to the days of our forebears they employed a simple piece of technology for mowing fields.  The scythe is simple yet effective; a stick with a blade at the end.

The one I purchased has been brought into the twenty-first century by its aluminium-alloy snath (the stick bit) which is both light and strong.  

Scything action shot - scythe cutting through grass. #BeehiveYourself #WantageHoney #AmericanScythe
scything action shot – scythe cutting through grass

I had my first use of my scythe this week – see how I got in by watching my video.


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