Thursday, April 1, 2010

Out the Window

The bee yard is east of the shop, so I can see it from where I'm sitting in my loom, warping linen today.  Bill Pike and his grandson arrived with wooden crates of bee swarms, and the dark Hawaiian queen bees, opened up the boxes and settled everyone in.

The queen in her small private screened compartment (black, upside down in the picture) travelled with her own little sugar cube.  Bill shook the bees into their new home after her. There is a little marshmallow plug in her compartment, that the bee colony will have to eat through, in order to free her for her queenly duties of egg laying and constant grooming.  This yard is the only one he has set up in a valley.  He hopes the bees will gather nectar from basswood trees in our woods, which makes a light amber, delicately flavored honey.

No one was stung, not even I taking these pictures without a bee hat on.  In fact, standing there in clouds of buzzing honey bees, was strangely elating.

8 comments:

Hilary said...

Very cool...thanks for that close up look.
You are brave, too.

jude said...

i always wanted to have bees. this is great, thanks for the close up.

Velma said...

i love the colored hives-new to me. i have heard about the bees having something very special, i like your reporting on the swarm. i'm a little fearful.

Susan said...

I thought I'd be fearful, too, but the bees buzzing was almost calming, entrancing, more so than watching a waterfall, or flames. Truly, we got a little high, just standing there

DEEP END OF THE LOOM said...

You are brave, I see bees and run for the hills. If I get bit, I need a hospital asap, never want to experience that again. But I love honey and we have a wonderful bee farm in Lake Wales, FL, Struther's Honey, is wonderful.
http://polkfl.blogspot.com/2009/05/struthers-honey-since-1935.html

Susan said...

Bee keeping is such an old practice. Honey is delicious, and very healthful. Bee lore is interesting, too. Housewives in the middle ages were supposed to 'tell the bees" about household matters, to make sure the house ran smoothly--I'm going to tell the bees about my business decisions, and see what happens...

riverweave said...

This is so interesting -- I didn't know you had a bee-yard! I'm checking this out next time I'm there.

Alison said...

bees are so sweet, aren't they?

my favourite thing to do when we had bees, was to sit out in the yard on a warm day and watch them all line up around the edge of the bird bath and drink water from their little sippy straws.

they are unbelievably sweet beings.