Archive for April, 2009

Bees, bees, wonderful bees

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Bees are fascinating creatures.  They pollinate all our crops and share their excess honey.  The bee has a certain job to do throughout their short life cycle of approximately 45 days.  When they are young they help nurse the newly hatched bees then they guard their home and eventually become worker bees where they go out and gather nectar and pollen.  The pollen is protein for the bees and of course the nectar is the food.

This year we are starting off with three bee hives and hope we can have some honey late in the summer.  One hive should be able to produce 100 pounds of honey in one season.  That is if all goes well, we have a nice warm summer with showers every once in a while.  We are hoping for a nice warm summer not only for the bees but for the fruit, berries and veggies.

Craig checks on the bees every 3 days or so.  These are new bees so we need to build up the hive slowly.  Because it’s so early in the season we are feeding the bees sugar water and the feeders are totally empty every 3 days.  Once the boxes start getting full we will put another box on and eventually the honey boxes (supers) will go on last. 

The bees have been very very busy these last few days during this gorgeous weather.  We can see the bee highways  that go straight to the maple trees up on the hill.  I think we have the perfect location for the hives.  Not too much sun but enough and close to the creek for quenching their thirst.  The maple honey will be for the bees this year since we really cannot put the honey super on until they have enough honey for themselves.  We hope we can put those on during the blackberry/lavender blooming  time and keep that honey for ourselves.  

The big fuzzy bumble bees are out pollinating our blueberries.  We love bumble bees, mason bees, any type of bees….except for the yellow jackets and wasps.  Not too fond of those.

Hope you also enjoy your hard-working bees!

Time to transplant the cool weather seedlings

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beautiful april weather

beautiful april weather

After the hot weather it is nice to see the cool spring weather, perfect for transplanting and then the rain.  Am happy to see the rain watering the transplants.  This week we got onions in the ground, some zuchini, lettuces, broccoli and carrots.  The zucchini may be a little too early so just in case will start another flat in the greenhouse.  Last year, zucchini was a hot commodity at the market, yep zuchinni!  The costata romanesco is my favorite, it has a nice nutty flavor.  Great in soups, grilled, sauteed, possibilities are endless. 

Don’t get me started on onions…  If you have never had grilled cipollini onions, you haven’t lived!  Seriously, once you try a cipollini you will be hooked.  Not all onions are created equal.  These are best grilled, my favorite is on bread with a fresh garden tomatoe and the grilled onion on top.  Relax, enjoy the weather…soon.  It’ll be here before you know it.