Jan 09

New home and all is well… nearly

Sorry for the delay but selling up a business them moving a few hundred miles takes time.

However we re now located in the very lovely Scottish ~Borders in a lovely small village with no street names or numbers and no street lights so a dark sky environment!

Bees? Yes I have now got the amazing number of one hive. LOL I have never in all my beekeeping years only over wintered just the one. Even in my first year I took four in and out of wintering so this is something I am not used to and am not very happy about but there it is.

I deliberately sold up down south as some not so nice people on the Scottish forum mumped about bringing up “foreign” bees which made me laugh as there are thousands of colonies in Scotland from the same gene pool as mine were but I thought fresh start and no need to rock boats. So the one I have came from this area and no doubt will be four or more by the end of this season with some judicious manipulations and a few pounds spent.

Hoping no doubt like you for a good season and some good nectar flows.

 

PH

Jul 03

Going to the Heather

Over and over the old chestnut of the Glorious 12th as the starting date appears in print. If you want a heather crop it pays, literally to be on your moor by the third week in July.

I attended one Aberdeen and District honey show where the “worthies” were moaning about the failure of the heather that year. I smiled quietly having extracted a ton of the gloriously pungent honey. The so called failure of the heather that year was in reality the failure of the beekeepers to get the bees there in time. It was and is that simple.

As for starvation on the moors if the weather is reasonable they will work away quite happily amongst the myriad of little flowers that exist amongst the heather stems. Go up now and have a look for yourself. Obviously if the weather is dire then that is quite another matter. I have had some supers of very nice moor honey before the Ling flow commences.

The advice about having the brood box full of brood is good, and two broods full of brood are doubly better than the one. Remember the heather is hard on the bees with the spiders taking their toll as well as the bees wearing them selves out.

Another useful trick is to put a couple of cut comb frames in the supers to give yourself the chance of some lovely comb honey, your customers and or friends will appreciate the delicacy.

Get organised, get going and get there early, it winna wait for you, trust me on this.

 

PH

Apr 16

Over wintered Nucs

It’s been a late start this season and as of today’s date I consider it three weeks later than 2014. 

 

My over wintered nucs are in two camps, the very ordinary and the romping ahead camp. The temptation is to borrow from the good to boost the poor but no I am resisting. The good un’s will end up as colonies very shortly, the next two weeks should do it with some warmth, and the laggedybobs can toddle along until it is swarming time when they will be useful, as in the queens can head up new nucs and their bees can be added to existing stocks to give them a boost up, or added in to swarm nucs to boost them. 

 

Ah the delights of nucs, they are so versatile.

 

PH

 

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