A swarm. O.M.G.

Swarm bin and suit

Part 1 – A Swarm Arrives Don’t you just hate it when your head, warm and cosy in the sand, is forced to come out and face reality? How prepared was I for a swarm? I had thought that it was something I would have to face sooner or later and that I might use… Read more »

Rabbit-proof honey bee plants

Ice plant

What do you do if your garden planting is already restricted by having to look for rabbit proof plants and you want to provide honey bee fodder? Roy Lancaster’s book ‘Perfect Plant, Perfect Place’ is my bible for tricky planting conditions.  He invariably offers an attractive and unusual variety even if you’re bored of the… Read more »

Propolis

Entrance

As I understand it this is the propolis gateway through which bees ‘de-bug’ on their way into (and out of) the hive.  Brushing past the propolis which has anti-microbial and fungal properties, helps them keep clean. The great propolis story is how they can ‘embalm’ an intruder that is too big to be physically removed… Read more »

Beekeeping information – Recommended reading for beginner beekeepers

Bee-friendly Beekeeper by David Heaf David Heaf’s book is one of the few that comes from the perspective of the bee rather than the beekeeper. He favours the Warré hive but general principles apply. Barefoot Beekeeper by Phil Chandler The top bar hive equivalent of David Heaf’s book. Guide to Bees & Honey by Ted Hooper… Read more »

Early spring forage for honey bees

Corylus contorta

My local beekeeper association has kindly sent round a note reminding beginner beekeepers to check food stocks in their hives as his own bees are taking a substantial amount of fondant at the moment.  The weather has been mild and sunny (in the south west anyway) and the bees have been flying.  It’s fantastic to… Read more »