Saturday, March 31, 2012
Tuesday, March 27, 2012
With Hive #1 I reported that there were three frames with a small cluster of bees. I spotted eggs in many cells. Some cells had more than one egg. That's a no-no.
[Photo - Janice assisting with the inspection]
Fast forward one week later. I show the hive to my beekeeping friend Janice. She confirms that she saw a couple eggs in a couple cells. Then while I’m holding the frame closely I see Her.
So many questions.
Only time will answer them.
Monday, March 19, 2012
The bottom board was covered with bee parts. A sad scene.
The top exit/ventilation hole had about 2 handfuls of bees pooled where the wrap was snug against the hive, just under the vent--all dead.
There were live bees on three frames in the medium super and they were clustered over cells of eggs. I didn't see any larvae or a queen. There was one egg in each cell at the bottom--so it may take a few days to determine if they really do have a queen or if it's a drone layer.
The super was heavy with capped honey but the surface of the cappings had a fine layer of a blue coloured mold. This I'm presuming is because of the mist/moisture from the fall.
Wednesday, March 14, 2012
This is a continuation of the fermented honey story.
My beekeeping friend Janice gave a jar to a lady who likes to bake.
This is what she came up with.
This combination of salty and sweet is the perfect treat. And no taste of fermentation at all.
Thanks go to Meaganne. Her recipe is below:
Honey Orange Salted Caramels
1 cup milk
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
2 vanilla beans
3/4 cups salted butter
3/4 cup honey
1 3/4 cups white sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp salt (coarse sea salt is best)
Prepare your pan by greasing it with butter then lining the bottom with parchment paper. Do not use wax paper because the caramel will stick.
Place the milk, heavy cream and 1 vanilla bean (split down the center but beans still inside the pod) in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. Remove from heat and allow to sit for 30 minutes. Strain out and discard the vanilla bean pod. Measure 2 cups of the liquid.
Combine in a deep saucepan 2 cups of above liquid, 1 vanilla bean (use only the stuff inside the pod) butter, honey, sugar, juice/zest from the orange. Do not combine the vanilla extract and the salt.
Cook over medium heat, stirring. Use a pastry brush dipped in water and brush down any sugar that has crept up the sides of the pan. When the mixture reaches a "hard ball temperature" (250) immediately remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla and salt.
Pour the mixture onto the prepared pan and cool completely in the refrigerator until firm.
Once hardened cut into desired portions - use a cookie cutter. You may need to let the caramel sit at room temperature to cut through it. Dip the cookie cutter into sugar then drop the cut caramel into a bowl of sugar and toss to coat it.
Original recipe courtesy of:
Many thanks Meaganne for these sweet treats.
Monday, March 12, 2012
At least this hive is alive. And if I remember last year, this hive may be much more active inside than outside. It wouldn’t surprise me to find on inspection that they’re doing fine. Time will certainly tell either way.
I hear temperatures on going to be up this week. My thoughts turn now to when to start feeding and medicating, especially for Nosema, and those darn Varroa Mites.
Sunday, March 11, 2012
The bee yard looked very much the same today as it did when I was last there in the fall. There were small piles of dead bees out front, as expected. I swept away.
No bees were flying but because of the cold I hadn't expected to see them. I wish I had come out on some of the sunnier days were had when temperatures were much warmer. Luck would have it that I wasn't available on those days.
At home I have woodenware that I haven't nailed together yet. In the kitchen sit buckets of wax waiting for me to make candles.
Oh yes, it's time all right. Time to consider the bees.