Sunday, June 17, 2012


 Yesterday we harvested 6 zucchini, about half a pound of tomatillos, 5 little cucumbers and about a cup of blackberries. We need another cup of blackberries so Grandma can make a pie (she needs at least 4 cups).
 The cat, standing guard, and taking a break from playing with Freddy.

Mom, Daniel and I checked on the bees yesterday. It's been about two weeks since we last checked.

 The bees have filled up about 6 frames with comb.
 We didn't look for the queen yesterday. The bees were pretty hot. There were several dozen at the entrance to the hive, fanning it. Instead of using the smoker to tame the bees, we sprayed them with sugar water. This kept them busy because they were concentrated on eating the sugar water instead of trying to sting intruders.
You can see the different cells; The larger ones that stick up off the frame are drone larva. The ones that are flatter are worker bee cells.

We probably could have waited another couple weeks for this, but we went ahead and put the queen excluder on and a small super for honey. The queen excluder does exactly what it sounds like; it is a plastic piece that has holes in it that are large enough for the worker bees to fit through but not the queen. You put this between the brood box (the larger lower box where there are eggs) and the upper supers so that the queen doesn't lay eggs where you want to store honey. 

From this point forward, we won't be feeding anymore sugar water. Otherwise, the bees will store sugarwater in the super. 
 To make the wax foundation a little more enticing, we sprayed a little sugar water on the foundation.

Then the inner cover went back on, and our make-shift outercover, which is a piece of corrugated metal with a concrete block on top.

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