A Sweet Swarm

Bob Torbert holds a jar of honey produced by bees from the Renaissance of Florence’s beehive.

Torbert’s concern about a reduction in pollination of the community’s plants in previous years created the idea for the beehive.

FLORENCE – The Renaissance of Florence, an assisted living community at 3275 Co. Rd. 47, is sweetening up their days with their own beehives on-site.  The hives are healthy and undisturbed, located outside the community in the back corner of the courtyard nestled among the many trees.

 It all started when a resident at the Renaissance, Bob Torbert, was tending to his growing garden at the community.  As an avid gardener, he grows all kinds of flowers, plants, and veggies, including tomatoes, hydrangeas, and more.  Bob noticed the garden wasn’t thriving as much as it should.  To help get things going again, he decided to acquire bees to pollinate his garden.

After speaking with The Renaissance’s Life Enrichment Director, Mary Donna Ott, about his idea, Bob called up a friend who was a beekeeper, Greg Crenshaw, to assist him. Greg soon arrived and took care of everything: the beehives, the bees, and where they should be located.

 “Last year we didn’t have any pollination for our garden, and it didn’t do well.  So, I asked a friend, Greg Crenshaw, to bring us a bee hive,” Torbert said recently. “He has and this is the result of our year of having bees,” he continued, while showing off a full quart mason jar.   

The hives have been up since May 2021. All honey collected will be used by the culinary team at the community to make special treats for the residents, and the resident-led Garden Club will use the honey to raise more money to buy more plants.

 The bees have been doing their due diligence adding to and beautifying The Renaissance garden by being active in the trees and the flowers.

“They are so active in our garden and in our flowers.”  It is just wonderful to have their help in beautifying  our home here at Renaissance,” Torbert added.