March 28, 2005

I hope everyone had a wonderful Easter. We spent time with my family and my half-brother & half-sister I had not seen in over 10 years.

It was a 5 hour trip back but we had to check the bees when we got in. We are still feeding them sugar water. Out trees have tiny, tiny blooms on them and the bees are just going crazy trying to get the pollen. We check the feeders to see if the syrup is gone. Before we refill it we lift the hive slightly to check the weight, if it seems heavy we then pull the frames out and check if the Queen has new larva in the cells, if there is pollen in the cells and if the bees seem to be making honey. If so we don't refill the feeder because they will have enough to live off of.  When the hive gets larger we will split it into 2 hives. We just go along the row checking and feeding. We have 2 hives that are really mean. It seems they just hang around to watch us and when they see us coming they alert the troops!

I have a show the latter part of June and hopefully will have my wildflower honey ready to go. It anyone is interested we sell it for $5 for 1 pound and $10 for 2 pounds the only extra you pay is shipping.

We have ordered over 600 bottles so far and 1000 labels for the entire season. Last year we did over 150 gallons of honey, wildflower and sourwood. We also have some new gadgets. A thick wire screen that is v-shaped and doubled over. We place it down in the feeder so that the bees can climb down and feed and get back up without drowning. We have 3 types of feeders: some are the typical jar type that fits the front of the hive, some are top feeders that you put at the very top and they are shaped square like a super and you pour the feed in and it runs out little holes in a chamber that the bees can get to and some are side feeders, where you take out a rack and slide in a hollow box shaped like a frame and the bees climb down in it to feed that where the v shaped screen come in handy.

Will post more next week to let you know what steps come next.