Q & A with Beekeeper Juli Tafoya

Posted by Whole Earth | 06.13.2023

Juli Tafoya beekeeper and Whole Earthling - travperk_photo


Q & A with Beekeeper Juli Tafoya


You may have met Juli Tafoya at our Westgate store in Austin. She takes care of the store's toy department. On her days off she takes care of the bees at her apiary. Have questions about bees and beekeeping? Juli has answers! Stop by our Whole Earth store at Westgate on Sunday, July 9th from noon to 3pm for Meet a Beekeeper Day! Say hello to Juli and snag a packet of Bee Happy Flower Mix seeds. 


What influenced you to become a beekeeper?

I took a class and fell in love with the bees.


How long have you had an apiary?

I've had an apiary for six years.


How did you learn to become a beekeeper?

It was a combination of trial and error and learning from an elderly Native American and Mexican man.


What is the biggest challenge you've faced as a beekeeper?

My biggest challenge is keeping the bees alive and trying not to get stung.


What do you love most about beekeeping?

The bees and the calm they give me when I'm out there taking care of them.


Is it true that one should never eat bananas near a beehive?

I've never heard of that before. I eat bananas out by the hives all the time.


Have you planted a garden for the bees with some of their favorite plants?

Absolutely, I love gardens, but the armadillos love the garden more.


Do you have special honeys that are based on the flowers of particular plants like sourwood honey in the Appalachian Mountains?

My bees visit Texas cedars and Texas oaks. There are not many wildflowers out on the bee property.


What's your favorite way to use honey?

I actually don't like the taste of honey and give all my honey away.


Have you taken part in any bee rescue operations?

Yes.  I've rescued bees from trees, water meters, and inside the wall in a building.


What's your advice for someone who would like to learn about beekeeping?

I suggest talking to a beekeeper and be sure it's someone who has had bees for multiple years. That's the only way.


Do you have a favorite swimming hole?

My backyard.  I have a pool that looks like a swimming grotto.



An example of the heart transformed from a horseshoe at Pioneer Farms class in Austin travperk_photo




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