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Member Spotlight: Bee Keepers

Justin and Martha Keane have been NASE Members since 2003. They own Dogwood Bee Farm in Mulino, Ore.

Tell us about your business.

We’re certified arborists, and have provided professional tree care services in the Portland area for over 15 years. The seasonal nature of our tree care business, Roots and Shoots LLC, combined with our love of gardening and orchard production led to an interest in those wonderful insects that make it all happen, and to the creation of Dogwood Bee Farm, our small apiary, in 2010.

We provide pollination services, as well as honey and beeswax products, specifically our Simply Bee Lotion Bar line. Our Simply Bee products are handmade by Martha on the farm using all natural, all Oregon-grown ingredients. Starting with our very first hive, we noticed amazing improvements in our garden, our trees, and our happiness.

How do you market your business?

We advertise Dogwood Bee Farm and our products to our tree care clients in person and in our annual Tree Times newsletter that we mail to our tree service clients. Word of mouth through social networks works well, and we also partner with community-shared agriculture (CSA’s), other small businesses, and local feed stores to get our name and products out. We’ve also had success with the lotion bars at holiday craft fairs.

What’s your favorite thing about your business?

The benefit that our clients’ crops and orchards gain from having our bees near them is amazing. Additionally, in our area, locally sourced food products are very popular. It’s
been wonderful how people
really want to have a connection with us personally as their
honey producer.

What advice would you offer to your fellow NASE Members?

Apply for an NASE Growth Grant! Receiving the grant at the end of 2012
was a milestone in our business. We were able to use the money to purchase commercial-grade honey extracting equipment that propelled our business
far faster than we were originally expecting. This equipment has also given us the opportunity to diversify the business. You’ll be surprised how far $5,000 will go.

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Your business could be featured in the SelfInformed Member Spotlight or another NASE publication. Let us know you’d like to be featured and tell us more about your business on our Publicity Form.


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