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Our Journey to Beekeeping - Lorob Bees, LLC

Our Journey to Beekeeping

Once upon a time, in the humble confines of a basement room in my home, I embarked on an ambitious project: growing strawberries under grow lights. Yet, despite my efforts, the berries stubbornly refused to grow or ripen. After some research, I discovered the missing link — pollination. Although I tried hand-pollinating the flowers, the yield was still disappointingly low.

Simultaneously, my mother was facing a similar problem with her 75 feet of blackberry bushes. Once bountiful, they had yielded only a few quarts of berries for the past four years. Perplexed and seeking help, she consulted various experts, but no one could identify the issue. One day, the answer dawned on me: "Mom, you need bees! Your berries aren’t getting pollinated." Initially skeptical, she soon recognized the truth in my words.

A Journey into Beekeeping

This revelation set me on a journey into the world of beekeeping. I joined a local bee association where I met Pat, a seasoned beekeeper who generously took me under his wing. I devoured YouTube videos and absorbed Pat's wisdom, and soon, I was the proud owner of my first bee nuc.

The following winter, my mother and I embarked on an adventure to collect four more nucs. Unprepared for what awaited us, we found ourselves on a drive home with bees escaping from an open box in the back seat of my Honda Civic. What a spectacle we must have made at the traffic lights, swatting at the bees whirling around us! The journey ended with us carefully unloading the boxes and, in a moment of unconventional problem-solving, using a leaf blower to clear the car of bees!

We were now prepared for the next blackberry season with our five hives, but an unexpected hurdle arose: our bees were infested with varroa mites. Pat advised using an oxalic acid vaporizer. However, the ones available online were either too expensive or had long wait times. Not wanting to risk losing my bees, I decided to build my own vaporizer.

Countless hours of tinkering, failing, and redesigning later, I had a working model of an oxalic acid vaporizer. It was an exhilarating moment of triumph! I was now not only a beekeeper but an inventor too. With Pat's encouragement, I took my innovation to YouTube, where I received an overwhelmingly positive response from the beekeeping community.

The Birth of Lorob Bees, LLC

This was the birth of Lorob Bees, LLC — a name that combines the names of two crucial people on this journey, my mother, Lori, and myself, Rob. We set out on a mission to help other beekeepers maintain healthy hives by providing affordable, effective oxalic acid vaporizers. In our first year alone, we aided over 2,000 beekeepers in their fight against varroa mites.

Beekeeping has become my sanctuary, my source of joy. The sight of a healthy, egg-laying queen is a reward in itself. The journey has not only led me to find my place in the world but also fostered a deeper bond with my mother and grandfather. It's humbling to think of the impact we've had on the beekeeping community, and I look forward to the continued journey of Lorob Bees, LLC.

Rob Pollock, President - Son - Beekeeper