Don’t get me wrong we have some wonderful supportive neighbors of what we are trying to do with suburban homesteading not only that we have some fabulous neighbors they know who they are who have been there for our family through thick and thin and we are truly so grateful for them! They put up with some of our eccentricities by the main stream standards but recently we ran into an issue with neighbors who actually only live next to us a couple of weeks a year. It seems like we all end up with neighbors that are often looking to have a problem for some reason or another.
So what to do with a pesky neighbor who doesn’t want you to have chickens or bees well technically since we are not in city limits and we are not under a “Home Owners Association” there is no law that says we can’t have either however my husband The Viking in my life and myself we are gracious individuals who really seek to live harmoniously in society we want to alleviate our neighbors’ concerns and hopefully resolve them. The saddest part of the whole affair is how much blame is being put on the harmless little honey bee which is the key to our survival as a planet. I mentioned this entire situation to my friend Katherine I told her the lady of the house keeps saying the bees are chasing her and the man of the house keeps saying he is getting stung. Katherine said pointedly most likely the female of the house is wearing a scent that the bees are checking out that’s what they do and I told her well I don’t know why the man of the house says he keeps getting stung. I mean I work closely with the bees often about 2 feet from their hive feeding the chickens and I don’t get stung at all they don’t even chase me. It makes me wonder if something else isn’t chasing them like a yellow jacket or wasp and they are blaming the poor little honey bee.
Here is our map for keeping peace with the neighbors.
1. Share some eggs and honey with your neighbors they can actually be your best advocates for what you are trying to accomplish with sustainable living and often will be your best supporters.
2. Allay their fears let them know ways you are being proactive on your lil homestead for example many of our neighbors may not know we are currently in the process of downsizing our chickens as we realized we had more going on than we could handle
3. Be willing to meet with neighbors and address their concerns
4. Share your pest management program with them
5. Stay in communication with your neighbors share your phone numbers with them to call you if any issue arises
6. Be a good neighbor yourself – be the kind of neighbor you would like to have
Traditionally all of the above has worked very well for us and since we have lived in our home we have only had the issue that came up recently. Hopefully us being proactive and discussing these issues will keep them comfortable but as you know if you are the kind of person who is looking for an issue it would be easy to find fault with any suburban farmer.
We can often be the hippies that grow our weeds too tall, we know the value of letting our grass trimmings go back to the lawn, often we don’t have the prettiest lawns but we do have the best eco systems 🙂 The truth of the matter is we don’t live in the country for a reason I have been there done that….I like living 10 minutes from the beach and 10 minutes from the mall….I like having the best of both worlds and will continue to strive to find a balance.
Hopefully you won’t have to deal with a situation like this yourself but if you do hopefully our map will help you on your journey.
Have a wonderful rest of your week!
The Life Of A Suburban Farmers Wife(lilsuburbanhomestead)
How To Deal With Annoying Neighbors(thenakedloon)
Think Your Chickens Are Safe? Think Again!lilsuburbanhomestead)