At the Veneto Agriculture demonstration company, the representatives of the regional beekeeping associations were able to see the electronic hives of the detection network in operation and visit the Silfio plant, a multi-role plant whose flowers are so popular with bees. The point about the European BeeDiversity project.  

On Wednesday 14 July 2021, thanks to an initiative of the Interreg Italy-Slovenia "BeeDiversity" project about ten representatives of the three main regional beekeeping associations in Veneto (Api Dolomiti, Trevigiana Beekeeping Association, Regional Beekeeping Association) were able to learn about the functioning of electronic hives and evaluate the role that Silphium perfoliatum could play for the world of bees and beyond. Agricultural practices compatible and facilitating beekeeping, innovative monitoring technologies such as electronic hives are in fact the focus of the "BeeDiversity" project, which sees Veneto Agricoltura as the protagonist together with other partners from Friuli-Venezia Giulia and Slovenia.  

The electronic hives installed in Vallevecchia contribute to a wider monitoring network with which the Beediversity Project has articulated between Italy and Slovenia and which Veneto Agricoltura has also extended to other regional sites. Thanks to these, it is possible to remotely know some important parameters on the health and productivity of the hive and develop useful information for beekeepers and which Veneto Agricoltura disseminates through the "Beekeeping Bulletin".  

The demonstration field of Silphium perfoliatum, a perennial plant of the Asteraceae family, native to North America and naturalized in northern Italy, has allowed us to evaluate the characteristics of this plant of great interest for beekeeping (and not only). Silphium is a rustic plant, 90-180 centimeters high but capable of reaching almost 3 meters.  

The yellow flowers from July to September are very popular with bees and other pollinating insects. Experiences conducted in various European countries have shown a production of honey up to 150 kg / ha, with a minimum water regime of 400-500 millimeters of water. Furthermore, the seeds of Silphium, small and abundant, and the water that collects in the leaves, represent a resource for the avifauna; also for this reason, Silphium is a species recommended in the context of greening practices of European Agricultural Policy. And finally, the fresh or ensiled biomass of Silphium is suitable for the production of biogas.  

The quality of the crop is clearly visible and those present expressed their interest by declaring themselves willing to replicate these experiments in the farms of their members.