It is almost time to pull my first honey of the season. 2009 has been a wonderful spring. With temperatures cooler than normal and lots of rain. The nectar and pollen flow has been plentiful. The bees have been very busy. Every trip the forging bees make yields lots of protein and carbohydrates.
Mr. Charlie is coming over tomorrow and we are going to check all the hives for queen cells again and see which hives need escape board (the bees can get out of the honey super but they can not get back in). We will be ready to harvest honey on Tuesday or Wednesday. I am anxious to see how much liquid gold my girls will produce this spring.
We met beekeepers Sue and Jim Gertis while on vacation last week. They were wonderful friendly people that told us a lot about how they keep bees. Their honey and beeswax was used on several recovering turtles at The Georgia Sea Turtle Center on Jekyll Island. They gave us a jar of their Jekyll Island honey and it is fabulous.
I will let you know how many pounds of honey we harvest.
Friday, May 8, 2009
We have had a busy week on Sasserfrass Hill. We have been planting lots of plants and seeds. I planted more Black Eye Susan Vines, Hummingbird (Cypress) Vines and lots of multicolored morning Glory vines along all the fences in my yard and garden. We transplanted cuttings from April's Lady Banks Rose and pulled lots of weeds. (I am not using any chemicals on my lawn) We got about an inch of rain this week. Everything is lush and green and looks so nice. It will be hot and dry soon enough.....
April (my sister in law) and I rescued lots of Easter Lillie's from the dumpster.
We believe in recycling, reusing and reducing land fill waste. I must plant them in my garden next week. I will also share some of the bulbs with my sister.
I found lots and lots of ants in the Aqua Hive yesterday. The most I have ever had in a hive at one time. The ants were into the frames taking out the honey. This indicates a weak hive...A strong hive would keep them out. I hate killing ants but they CAN NOT be in my hives. It took almost all day ... I squished a million ants, wait an hour and go back and squish more. Today when I checked there were only a few ants in the hive.
Mr Charlie administered Bee Venom Therapy to our Multiple Sclerosis Patient today. She had about fifteen stings.
I have two nephews graduating from college in the morning. We are having a family get together at my brothers in Millen to celebrate their accomplishments in the afternoon. We will enjoy our family and friends. We will give thanks to God for blessing our family with these two fine young men, that I am sure will make the world a better place. We will also celebrate Mother's Day, while we are all together. All my siblings will be together. Our mother, has seven kids...she loves nothing more than having all her chicks in one place. She is a wonderful mother and my biggest fan.
Happy Mothers Day to mine and all mothers out there....I wonder if the bees think about their mother? The queen be can lay 1000 to 2000 eggs in a day. You thought you had a lot of kids to keep up with!!
We will be taking a break on Sasserfrass Hill for the weekend. We will look for and pull queen cells again on Monday, until then...
Sunday, May 3, 2009
Saturday I went to a local plant swap. It was buzzing with lots of plants and plant lovers. I loved to feel the energy put out by live plants. I did swap a few plants, but I bought more than I swapped. I got some very cool plants. My number one question to all the vendors.... "do the bees like it?" I got lots of plants my girls will enjoy. I also bought a big beautiful Stag Horn Fern.
I hung it in the pecan tree on the east side of my yard. It looks gorgeous!!! It gets morning light but not the brutal afternoon sun. It looks great with the peach and lime green hives.
The lime green hive I installed last Wednesday is looking good. I gave them another half gallon of food today.(sugar water) The peach hive is also thriving. She is a great little queen. (Pearl bought the paint and picked out the color. Thanks Again Pearl. I will give you a jar of honey from that hive in just a few weeks.) I painted another peach honey super today and I have it ready for next week. Mr Charlie says, we will have to add another honey super to the peach hive this week, when we go into each hive, pull every frame and check for queen cells and pests.
The girls are really taking advantage of the nectar flow. They are also bringing in legs full of pollen. Which means lots of protein for the baby brood. Did you know the bees mix pollen and honey together and feed it to the baby bees. They call it a bee bisquit or bee bread.... How cute is that????
I also finished up the stacked stone in the beds in front of my house. It turned out very well. I really love the way it looks.
The weather is perfect now. God has kept the rain coming and the plants are plentiful. We will have a bountiful harvest this spring. Thank You God!!! We are very grateful for all our many blessings on Sasserfrass Hill.
Friday, May 1, 2009
Hello Everyone! It is the first day of May. This year is flying by....at light speed.
I have been very busy on Sasserfrasshill. I have finished the stone work (stackstones in the beds and lamp post) in the front of my house. It turned out very good. I am happy with the results. David Mazul came by to check on a date for us to finish the flagstone at the end of the carport. It will look great when we finish that project. Then we may build a pergola. The hot afternoon sun really parches all the plants on the west side of the house. I am in need of more shade.
I have been planting flowers, vines and vegetables. The Bees have been busy collecting nectar, pollen and water. I have several very strong hives. Mr Charlie says...I will have honey in just a few weeks.
I installed a new package of Bees on Wednesday. I put them in a lime green hive on the east side of my house. I have two hives on the east side making a total of ten hives. The new bees seem to be doing great and learning the lay of the land.
I have a lot of seeds to plant.... but we need rain before I can plant.... I hope we get rain this weekend. Thank you God!!!.... in advance.
Before I forget.......Plant some wildflowers for the bees they will appreciate it.!
Hope to see you all soon.