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University of Minnesota Extension

Beltrami County Farm Family

Hiltz Bee Farm

The Hiltz farm in northern Minnesota’s Beltrami County was first owned by Lester Hiltz’s father. The farm is now owned by Lester and his wife, Ruth. Lester raised grains, seed, hay, honeybees and produce on the farm over the years. Currently, he raises hay, operates a tree farm, taps trees for maple syrup, grows squash, and raises honeybees. Ruth works on the marketing side of the operation selling the honey and squash.

Honeybees have become a passion for Lester. He loves teaching kids and adults the importance of bees. He holds educational meetings with people across the state for them to learn more about bees and beekeeping. He has started beekeeping groups in Bemidji and beyond. He sets up observation hives at the county fair and explains how hives and the bees operate. Lester has been offering his bee expertise to others for 34 years.

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