East Nashville store now home to honeybee population – Bees anticipated to pollinate plants within a three-mile radius

NASHVILE, Tenn. – East Nashville gardeners may notice an increase in honeybees this year, thanks to the rooftop hives Turnip Truck has installed at the Woodland Street store.

“The bees really epitomize the Turnip Truck spirit, making extremely local honey and supporting our neighbors through increased pollination,” said John Dyke, Turnip Truck founder and owner.

Turnip Truck baker Andy Manchester first started beekeeping with his wife Amy as a hobby at the couple’s Nashville home, with the intention of nurturing strong, natural hives.  Some of those backyard bees have moved to the rooftop of Turnip Truck, where the Manchesters installed and now manage three hives. Honeybees typically pollinate within a three-mile radius, and Turnip Truck hopes area gardeners will notice an uptick in buzzy backyard visitors this year.

The wooden hive bodies were handmade locally by Bon Aqua Springs Woodenware in Bon Aqua, Tenn.  Manchester carries his baker’s sense of creativity into managing beehives. “We name all of our backyard hives, in keeping with the temperaments of the communities,” Manchester said – noting a laid-back colony dubbed Eeyore and a feisty hive called Wiley. “That’s part of the fun for us, and I’m sure we will eventually name the Turnip Truck hives.”

“Our hope is to eventually harvest enough of our own honey to use it in our prepared foods department,” Manchester said.  “We also see the hives as an opportunity to build community among local hobbyist beekeepers by raising awareness of the craft.”

The honey flow, when most nectar is available, is in May and June in Nashville.  Turnip Truck’s hives are currently installed in preparation for a strong first rooftop honey harvest.

“This is community outreach in its purest form,” Store Director Phillip Hill said.

Andy & Bees Andy holding bees 2