Beekeeping, Gardening and Quilting in Eastern Wake County, North Carolina









Tuesday, October 3, 2017

The Good Life


I have a tenant in my henhouse!  It's a little frog and the first time I saw him was in the water bowl.  He looked pretty content and I figured he would move along.  That has been weeks ago and the little fella is still there.  He'll be in the water bowl or sitting right beside it - the other day he was in the nest box beside the egg (better a frog than a snake).  He has food, shelter, water and seems to have settled in with the girls. 
Lily took care of another possum last night -it's been awhile since one has been in the yard but Lily continues to do her job.  She's exhausted this morning and I am too since I had to put that possum in the trash in the middle of the night so she would stop barking (trash pickup today thank goodness). 


Monday, September 11, 2017

Reunion and Facebook

We had a family reunion Sunday (my Father's family) and it was really nice to see everyone.  Our group gets smaller every year.  As I've said before, I'm one of the older generation now.
Everything I took was eaten and I mean everything - I made my Mom's Powered Sugar Cookies, Pigs in a Blanket (of course, Carolina Packer Hot Dogs) and Deviled Eggs (real eggs from my chickens). 

 
Facebook
One of my cousins (Sue) had this to say - she found me on Facebook (my first and maiden last name) and for several weeks was chatting or whatever you do on Facebook.  Then it dawned on this other person she really didn't know who the heck Sue was and what was she talking about "going to the reunion".  Well, long story short, this person was not me and had no idea who Sue was or anything about the Family!  Sue has not unfriended this person but is not "talking" to her now.  This just cracks me up - that's why I don't do Facebook - it's crazy out there in Internet Land.

Saturday, September 2, 2017

Ginger, Sunflowers and Lantana


Several years ago, I planted one piece of a ginger plant.  Can't remember now who passed it along but it has done really well this year.


And I was really, really late in planting sunflowers but here they are and they've done well too.  I love the sunflowers planted along the highways.

I also bought some lantanas for $1.00 and they are thriving.  Butterflies and all types of bees love these flowers.  All of them were yellow but for a buck, what do you expect.
Animal update - everybody is fine.  One dog (Lily), one cat (Little Kitty), two chickens (never named) and I think about 15-16 goldfish and lots of bees. 

Monday, August 21, 2017

Bee Check August

I met Mr. Ellis Friday at Percy Flowers Store (of course we had to get a hot dog).  I needed four frames to fill out a super so Mr. Ellis brought them. And we talked about bees, our friend Jess, possums in my yard and how to take care of them and lots of other stuff.

Hive #1 August, 2017
So Saturday morning I opened both hives. 
Hive #1 - this is such a strong hive but the top super was empty.  There were bees working but none of the supers had honey on them.  So I took this super off and the top brood box has four empty frames so they still have plenty of room.  They need to finish filling that out before winter. Lots of bees in this hive but I didn't look in any more of the supers - it was very hot. 
Hive #2 August, 2017
Hive #2 - the top super was full so I added a super.  I'm not feeding them right now but I'll check at the end of the week and then decide if I need to start feeding again. 
All in all everything looked good.

Monday, July 24, 2017

Hive #2 July, 2017
I checked Hive #2 last Friday to see if the Queen was out of her cage and what was happening in the hive.  The Queen was out and I saw her - she looked healthy.  I'm feeding this hive while they get established. 
I also checked Hive #1 - so many bees in this hive.
As most of you know, it's been unbearably hot so the bees are working hard to keep their hive at the right temperature. 
 

Monday, July 10, 2017

Queen #2

 
The Queen that got away!
Yes, that is correct.  Queen #2 for Hive #2 which I made a split from Hive #1 on the first of July.  In my haste and lack of patience, ignorance and on and on, I opened the hive on July 5th and this is what happened . . . . the queen had not been released from her little cage.  There was lots of candy left in the cage and I thought she would be out by then or should be out so I popped the top off and she flew away.  And she did not fly back in even though I wanted her to and it was a slim possibility that she would.  So I checked the hive later and she was not there.  I was told the queen will sometimes fly back in the hive - just wait a day or two and see what happens. 
So Saturday I checked and no queen!  Mr. Ellis picked me up a queen and dropped her off today.  She is safely in the hive waiting to be released sometime next week by the bees - not me!  I am feeding the hive and have taken the top super off.  And I will keep my hands off the hive. 

Hive #2
 

Sunday, July 2, 2017

Extracting Honey


It's about time!  I think it has been three years since I took honey from my hives.  It is such a process - the getting ready part is a lot of work and then the cleaning up is more - there's literally honey everywhere. 
I use the extractor from our local beekeeping association.  Plastic on the floor, table and anywhere in the general vicinity.  I use plastic containers to hold the supers since the honey will leak all over the place if it's not in some type of container.  Five gallon food grade plastic buckets hold the honey - after extracting I will let it sit for a week or more before putting in jars.  And yes I have this thing - I don't use plastic jars - I really like glass and I have more than enough. 
I took the honey on Friday morning and it was an all day job and continued thru Saturday.  I took off 19 frames of fully capped honey and I got about three quarters of a five gallon bucket - that's a lot of honey. I hope it's enough for all those folks I have promised honey to and that want honey.