Farming for Bees

Apr 2, 2020 · Byron Williams

I am a huge fan of Ian Steppler and his family’s approach to farming and beekeeping. They grow crops such as Oil Seed Rape and Sunflowers which the bees forage on, the seeds can then sold for oil. They keep cattle and mob graze pasture land in rotations which they seed with wildflower, this produces well fed cows and forage for insects and bees.

Main Crops

  • Sunflowers (Helianthus annuus)
  • Oil Seed Rape
  • Onion
  • Strawberry
  • Mustard (Sinapis alba)
  • Beans (Vicia faba)
  • Peas
  • Squash/Pumpkins
  • Buckwheat (Fagopyrum esculentum)
  • Linseed
  • Courgette ‘Nero Di Milano’

Cover Crops

  • Borage
  • Phacelia
  • Alfalfa
  • Clover (Trifolium repens, Trifolium pratense, Melilotus officinalis)
  • Vetch (Vicia cracca)

Permanent Pasture

  • Virginia Mallow (Sida hermaphrodita)
  • Meadow Sage (Salvia pratensis)
  • Chicory (Cichorium intybus)


  • Lavender

My Offer

I would love to work with any farmer / young farmer to put in a test acre or a few of acres of a crop that’s mutually beneficial. Maybe we could plant some buckwheat, combine it and get the flour milled.