Well, we looked inside all the hives and there has not been a huge escalation in much of anything. I would say things are just puttering along slowly. Much slower this year due to those two hives swarming at the beginning of the month and all that rain in the spring. A couple of the hives will barely make enough honey for the winter, so these two I am going to start feeding with sugar water to help them along – we will not be taking honey from them anyway. I do not want to eat honey made from sugar so i only feed non producing hives at this time of year. We want each hive to have two big heavy supers full of honey for the winter. There is often a lull in flowers during high summer. The Blog bees have almost filled their two supers. When their top super in about 80 percent full I may put a little honey super on. But not yet. They have to get all their own honey in yet.
However I have two hives with honey supers on and I was able to cadge one frame of honey off one of them. The scent from this tray is heavenly. I brushed the few stray bees off it. Hurried it inside while it was still hot. Heated a knife. Gently cut the caps off the honey and let gravity do the rest.
Initially the honey and wax are strained through a sieve. I was left with quite a bit of wax this time. I will render the wax, store it and make candles in the winter. Then I strain the honey through a brand new silk stocking (I know that is a terrible waste of a good stocking but it is sacrificed to a good cause). This is the result.
Lovely color for so early in the season. Also you will see that the honey is a little cloudy. This is raw organic honey. It has not been heated or treated and it is ALL honey. So sometimes it is a bit cloudy. The flower origins of the pollen/nectar can result in a more opaque honey too. We have so many flowers around here it would be hard to tell which combination has given us this honey. It tastes just divine.
The plundered frame is out leaning on the hive and soon the bees will begin to rob the rest of their honey back. When they are finished I will store the cleaned frame ready to swap back in next time I collect some honey. It has what is called drawn comb on it, (I dripped the honey out of the comb) which saves the bees a lot of supplies and energy, so it will fill up faster. At the end of the season I remove the whole honey super and they will all retreat back into their larger frames and get ready for winter.
When the frame is clean I will show it to you. It looks amazing.
I want to show you a few of the farmers market shots tomorrow. So I will get those sorted. They will make you feel hungry for good food! Whats for dinner.. any suggestions?
I had tomato halves fried in butter and topped with pepper and basil for breakfast. YUM