Monday, April 09, 2018

honey bees

I picked up a package of bees today. Both of my hives died early last winter - it was a very hard fall/winter for bees here. I have heard that the overwintering rate in our area for experienced bee keepers was about 20%. One out of 5 hives survived. I almost decided it wasn't worth keeping bees and if I have to buy new ones every year, but I went ahead and got one hive anyway.

They are not off to a good start. Tonight will be very cold and I was told to keep them inside at 60F overnight and install them tomorrow. I was also told to spray sugar water on the frame near the queen to make sure they stay in a cluster and keep each other warm. I hear our weather will warm up at the end of this week, but we have another cold spell coming in soon after that. Our trees are all blooming, but the bees can't fly to gather any nectar until temperatures are above 50F or so.


Anonymous said...

The poor bees. We need them to pollinate our fruits and veggies

CHRIS said...

Oh, how frustrating and sad! Your poor bees! On the other hand, feel proud that, by signing up to keep bees again this year, you are helping with the shortage of bees in the world! Best of luck this time around! We are all crossing our fingers that this Spring warms up soon!

Sam said...

Apropos of nothing, but what are your favorite pole bean varieties?

kathy said...

My bees are doing well so far. They are eating lots of sugar water that I feed them as they wait for warmth and flowers. I think my new hive location is good. Lots of morning sun. I need to go in soon for an inspection and make sure the queen is ok. I’ll have time for that on Friday.

I have to get to answering the question about pole beans!! I forgot. I’ll write a post when I plant mine next week. The answer is I don’t really have a favorite. I grew a big teepee of Kentucky Wonder last year, but even though they are super prolific, I find them too stringy. My favorite is a variety I haven’t yet figured out the name of. Given to me by a colleague who brought it from China. A whitish bean that grows fat and is very crisp and somewhat lemony in flavor. I will grow these again this year, along withFortex, Emerite, Logan Giant, and a wax vairirty from Johnny’s. I am still building up the soil in my pole bean area and hope that I can get good teepees of all and early compare them this year.