Nina Bagley is abuzz over her latest project: a beehive in Frank Fetch Park.

Nina Bagley is abuzz over her latest project: a beehive in Frank Fetch Park.

The local apiarist is responsible for the maintenance of the hive, installed in May in the German Village park.

The hive, actually a box, contains 150,000 bees, which pollinate local flowers and plants and bring nectar back for the honey.

"I always say they're keeping the ecosystem in balance," Bagley said, noting that the hive is frequently inspected by a county official who reports to the Ohio Department of Agriculture.

To sweeten the pot, Bagley will give the German Village Garten Club honey from the hive to make sweets for the first Bee Brunch, which kicks off the 2011-12 membership drive for the club. The brunch is slated from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, July 30, at Frank Fetch Park, on East Beck Street at the corner of Dixon Alley.

The event is a slight departure for the club, which typically holds a garden tour to attract new members, said Carol Porter, a board member of the organization.

"One of the new trends is exploring what one can do with sweet bee products and our neighborhood specialist, Nina Bagley, is blazing the trail for us," Porter said.

The Frank Fetch beehive is the first city-sanctioned hive in any Columbus park. Although the first hives were installed at Franklin Park, a city-owned park managed by the Franklin Park Conservatory, those hives are maintained by Bagley and the Central Ohio Beekeepers Association.

Terri Leist, planning administrator for the Columbus Recreation and Parks Department, said that because of safety issues, she had reservations about the beehive in Frank Fetch Park.

"It was not an automatic yes," she said.

But Bagley and experts in the field assured her it was good for the local ecosystem and not dangerous.

Now, Leist is upbeat about the arrangement.

"I think it's unique because I think it's a good learning experience for all of us," she said. "And so for us to explore this and help Mother Nature along is a great thing. And to do it in a safe manner is equally rewarding.

Leist said the Garten Club gets the honey as part of the agreement.

Bagley said the hive can produce 100 pounds of honey per year in optimal conditions. Club members intend to sell the honey to raise funds to pay for maintenance of the park, said Jerry Glick, who belongs to the club.

Known as the "Bee Lady" in German Village, Bagley is a walking, talking encyclopedia of apian habitats and habits. She raises queen bees in hives at her house and a friend's property in Gahanna.

The Frank Fetch hive is in a secluded place, painted green to avoid detection, and the bees' flight patterns don't generally make them cross paths with humans, Bagley said. The hive is helping the greater ecological system and the honeybees, whose populations have declined in the last decade because of colony-collapse disorder, she said.

The origins of the are a matter debate.

"We need our honeybees," she said. "It's helping everybody in the community."