Paris Bees at Work From Notre-Dame to the Luxembourg Gardens

If a honeybee were giving a tour of Paris, she might start on the roof of the gilded Opera Garnier, which has been home to hives for three decades. Flying south, she might stop to admire the view from hives overlooking the Place de la Concorde before following the Seine River to the spires of Notre-Dame, where the bee hives, in contrast to the crumbling gargoyles, are thriving. She might wind up at the flower- and shrub-rich Luxembourg Gardens, which has been a honeybee haven for more than 150 years. Over the past decade, Paris, much like London and New York, has seen a notable rise in urban beekeeping. The city of Paris estimates it now has more than 1,000 hives. Beekeeping classes held at the Luxembourg Gardens are always fully subscribed, with some 200 people graduating every year, said Marie Laure Legroux of the Central Society for Apiculture, who teaches at the garden. Community gardeners in Paris are now requesting hives from the mayor’s office, which allocates them to gardens and other venues. The number of groups receiving hives has grown gradually since the city wants to ensure the bee population does not outstrip the pollen and nectar […]

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