Saturday, 9 June 2012

honey.....

The plight of the honeybee has been written about quite frequently over the past couple of years.

Veroa mite has killed most 'wild' (or feral) populations of honeybees and changing land use has removed many of the flowers that bees need. Add to this the contentious issue that is the use of neonicotinoid pesticides by farmers that attacks the bees' central nervous system and you see why they have a problem.

We were delighted, then, when our dear friends Linda and Trev first took up beekeeping and then placed their hives in the corner of our site we now call 'The Cordwood Apiary'. There are now four colonies of honeybees although, due to technical, beekeeping jiggerypokery, they are housed in eight hives of various sizes..... It has been explained!! Linda blogs about her bees on 'Bees and beyond' and it's fascinating to catch up with the work needed to allow bees to thrive.

But it's the honey we're interested in!! And it's surprising to know that despite an appalling April, there is now honey travelling from the Cordwood hives to the jars of 'Trevor's Honey'. Early nectar sources include the nectar collected from locally abundant oilseed rape, but there is a natural hiatus in nectar production after the initial spring nectar flow so further honey extraction will probably stop for a while. If conditions are right, there is then a high summer flow, so another harvest is eagerly awaited later in the year.

I'm now an official (unpaid) agent and carry jars of said honey if you want to buy some!!


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