Letter | Published:

Sources of London Honey

Nature volume 155, pages 8081 (20 January 1945) | Download Citation



As a perfumery research chemist and also as a London beekeeper for some eighteen years, I would like to point out critically but constructively that there is but little relationship between the several pollens found in a honey and the bulk of the nectars from which the honey is derived. I have samples of London honeys going back for about five years. These all exhibit the peculiarities mentioned by Dr. Melville in his communication1. But as I have pointed out on several occasions in the lay press and elsewhere, from observation—and this will be endorsed by other London beekeepers—the bulk of the main honey flow from London (in particular the parks) is derived from the limes (Tilia Europea) and the privet hedges (Ligustum vulgare). Since the War, however, the prevalence of willow herb (Epilobium angustifolium) has served to modify the blend, producing ultimately a paler and sweeter honey. Some years there is also a substantial honey flow from horse-chestnut, sycamore and maple; but coming early in the year, these nectars are mainly consumed in brood-rearing and not stored.

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  1. 1.

    Nature, 154, 640 (1944).

  2. 2.

    J. Econ. Entom., 35, 728 (1942).

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  1. 73 Westminster Gardens, London, S.W.1.



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