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

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Bee Water

I have blogged before about bees and their need for water. We've had some warm days recently and a couple of unlikely spots for drinking - this is an old dog watering bowl near the garden and the bowl with the rock is on top of the chicken house.
Of course, I have two ponds with some goldfish and plants and an old whiskey barrel with plants. They have lots of available water - it's always interesting where they choose to drink.
Murky water normally has a distinctive taste and smell that helps foragers find the source, while clean water seems harder for them to pinpoint. Honey chemistry has a simple procedure for destroying pathogens, so any undesirable water attributes are not passed to the honey.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Bee Check-Up

Today I opened all the hives down to the bottom of each. The weather was good and so were the bees. Did not see a queen but saw lots of brood and lots of bees. I couldn't see an egg if my life depended on it so I just hope the queens are laying.

Hive #4 - replaced the bottom box (needs painting and repair work) and put the second brood box between the supers

Hive #5 - there were some empty frames on the top super but I left well enough alone - not enough empties to be concerned about and they'll need the space soon

Nuc #1 - top and bottom brood boxes switched around, super left on top

Swarm Hive - put the brood box on the bottom and switched the supers around - they have some empty frames but lots and lots of bees

They all have plenty of food to survive. I didn't see any hive beetles - no signs of bees with any problems so I'm pretty happy.

FYI - I'm pretty puny but today I did all this lifting and shifting by myself. I probably won't be able to move tomorrow. But it was good and I see different things and learn more every time I open the hives (which I don't do very often) and I can't remember the last time every hive was checked to the bottom box.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Pink and Brown Pinwheel Quilt

I bought this as a kit many years ago from Etc Crafts in Cary. Pinks and browns were the rage at that time - I am not a big pinwheel fan so I don't know what possessed me to buy this kit.
The backing is some fabric I had in my stash and I did the machine quilting on my Bernina 910.
This is a donation quilt for Safechild