Bee pasture is defined as an area of open land over-grown with flowering plants on which bees feed. This may consist of a single species of plant, several types or a highly mixed multitude of nectar and pollen producing plants. Each type of pasture will produce a range of results within the beehive.
To be a successful beekeeper one must be aware of the flora on which bees feed, be able to assess the output of the pasture, and determine its quality. In a good locality, bee colonies will thrive and good to excellent crops of honey will be produced. Likewise, in a poor territory bee colonies will be slow to build, queens will disappear, colonies will swarm or abscond, and very little honey will be available.
Apiaries and colonies should be located within an economical flying distance from any good nectar source. Excellent bee pasture should be within two kilometers distance from the colonies and, of course, closer increases the efficiency of the foragers collecting nectar and pollen.
Although considered by most non-beekeepers to be 'weeds', these plants are of great importance to the local ecology and environment. The interactions of all the fauna and flora within a bee pasture raises the overall health and vitality of the eco-sphere, and stimulates production of clean air and water; and contributes to evolution. This is where new species of butterflies, bees, moths and dayflies are born.