Honeychick Homestead

Homestead, Health, and Happiness


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What’s up with “Bee-yonce?”

Yes, I’m still beekeeping! There has been activity outside both colonies everyday since I returned from Germany, and that is a good sign! I haven’t checked inside the colonies since I got home. I plan on taking one last peek this Sunday. After that it will be too cold to check on them again until spring.

Here are some pictures of what’s been happening with the Cosmo hive and their queen, Bee-yonce over the summer. This colony was started late in the season because the beekeeper providing these bees had an issue with the queens. We finally got a picture of Beeyonce during the August hive check 🙂

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Beware of Robbers!

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A cool picture of Cosmo colony “bearding” because it got to hot inside!

Yep, you read that right, robbers! Robbing is something I had no idea I’d need to be concerned about as a beekeeper. Bees from other colonies attempt to rob weak and/or new colonies of their honey stores. Robbing season usually begins in mid to late summer, and/or during droughts. Feeding bees can also encourage robbing, this is why I cover my top pail feeder with a box, it helps reduce the potential for robbing.  Continue reading


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Feed me, feed me!

I attended a beginning beekeeper summer check-in class in mid-June, and terms like dearth, robbing, and right sizing were explained. At the time, I didn’t realize how quickly I would experience all these things! Today’s post is about dearth, and the importance of feeding a new colony, something I kind of learned the hard way!

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The Secret Lives of Bees : How Honey Gets Made

P1020885I know it’s been awhile since I wrote about my bees, and although this post shares info about bees, it’s not about my bees. But don’t let that stop you from reading. I promise the link to the article I’m sharing is worth a read!

Thankfully my bees are doing great! I quickly checked on and fed them over the weekend. I was very excited to see how much comb they’ve built and they continue to grow. The Verbena hive already has lots of honey stored for the winter! The Cosmo hive is younger so they have some catching up to do!

I’ve had less time to write because I’ve been working as a volunteer analyst with LymeLight Foundation, and that project continues to need my full attention until the end of this week. I’m grateful to be able to assist a group that gives kids grants for treatment.

Here’s the post I mentioned from Serious Eats on how honey gets made.  I hope you enjoy the information and pictures as much as I did. Next week, I will have a post about my bees!


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I’m as Busy as a Bee!

I’m the one who’s busy as a bee! Summertime is always busy, and this summer has been no exception! The plum, and peach harvest that has taken up a majority of my time is winding down. I’ll be done preserving this weekend, whoo hoo! I hope to have an drip irrigation system for the orchard set up, and that will be a HUGE time saver!  I won’t need to drag hoses around to water each tree individually, YAY!!!

My least favorite things, Lyme Disease and Babesia, decided to flare up a bit during the last week, that put a damper on my writing, and updating Facebook.

I hope to have time to write about my bee adventures in the next week. Lots of cool stuff is happening with the bees! Check out this TED Talk about bees. Hope you enjoy it!

 

 

New Bees, More Fun!

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Busy, busy busy, summer and it’s outdoor and social busyness has arrived! The fruit is ripening and preserving will soon be in full swing. I’d like to get some late summer veggies planted for my garden. Cute baby chicks are still on the to do list, but they likely won’t arrive until fall. My awesome husband has the coop built, so they have a home when I’m ready. I have more recipes to share, and I hope get them written soon. Oh, and I have those beautiful bees to keep an eye on 🙂

For now, you’re just going to have to “bee” happy with this post about my bees! I’ve decided to name my hives to help keep track of everything. The name for the first hive from the bee package will be Verbena, and the queen, “Lorde” lives there. The name for the second hive from the nuc will be Cosmos, and the queen “Beeyonce” lives there.

Here’s pictures of what happened the last couple weeks.

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This gallery contains 16 photos


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New Hive Start Up Cost

Recently, a blog subscriber asked me how much it cost to get started beekeeping. Thank you Anita for asking, and inspiring a blog post! Overall, the most expensive thing has been the equipment. The bees are relatively inexpensive.  Here’s a breakdown of what I spent to get my first hive started.

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