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A Honey of a Birthday

On Sunday when I worked the hive I had an unexpected young visitor who was celebrating his 7th Birthday. He wanted to see the bees and taste honey, which , he claimed that he had never tasted before(!). So, I put on my suit and explained the equipment and the bees and the process and went out and worked the hives. I brought some more " Count of Minty Crisco Cakes " to offer the bees and also took a serving spoon to see if I could steal a few spoonfuls for our Birthday guest.

While the Birthday boy and his wonderful Aunt watched safely from inside the house through the windows, I walked down the hill to work the hives. The bees were calm and the spoon went into the comb like warm butter. While I felt awful sampling their honey, the bees did not seem to care one bit! Our guest was delighted and he even tried on a bee bonnet. Hopefully he and his Aunt will come back and help us work the hives one day, and at the very least, they understand more about bees than they did before his visit.

I gave him the Bee coloring book that is put our by Brushy Mountain Bee Farm so that he could think a little bit more about the bees after he left while he enjoyed his fresh honey Birthday treat.

Ubi mel, ibi apes

Where there is honey, there are bees. 

The Bee Boy's Song by Rudyard Kipling

Bees! Bees! Hark to your bees!
'Hide from your neighbors as much as you please,
But all that has happened, to us you must tell,
Or else we will give you no honey to sell!'

A Maiden in her glory,
Upon her wedding-day,
Must tell her Bees the story,
Or else they'll fly away.
Fly away - die away -
Dwindle down and leave you!
But if you don't deceive your Bees,
Your Bees will not deceive you.

Marriage, birth or buryin',
News across the seas,
All you're sad or merry in,
You must tell the Bees.
Tell 'em coming in an' out,
Where the fanners fan,
'Cause the Bees are justabout
As curious as a man!

Don't you wait where trees are,
When the lightnings play;
Nor don't you hate where Bees are,
Or else they'll pine away.
Pine away - dwine away -
Anything to leave you!
But if you never grieve your Bees,
Your bees 'll never grieve you!

More Helpful Beekeeping Links

The National Honey Board-

The American Beekeeping Federation-

American Honey Producers-

Bumble Bee Information-

The American Bee Journal-

Bee Culture-

The American Apitherapy Society-

Interview with Dr. Marla Spivak about Bees on Splendid Table

Dr. Marla Spivak from the NPR Splendid table site

Listen to the extended interview linked at the website above.

Visit Dr. Spivak's Lab at the University of Minnesota:


Flowers for Foraging

 The privet blooms are gone and the Tallow trees have not quite started blooming. Flowers blooming now still include Mimosa trees, Magnolia trees, Elderberry bloossoms, Rudebekia ( Black-eyed Susans), Buttercups, Clover, Verbena, Hydrangeas, and more.  These blooms in our yard are helping to feed our bees.

Passion Flower or "May Pop!"
"Double Delight"- Fragrant Hybrid Tea Rose

"Luba" or Love's Progress After One Month in the Apiary

Smoking the hive.

Luba's hive is much more active and protective.

They are using more of the new comb.

Very little activity in the top third Super.

New comb with workers working it!

Old Queen's comb with extensions on the bottom.

New comb with some honey and lots of workers.

Honey in new comb!

Lots more workers in Luba's hive.

More honey comb.

You can really see the honey on this side of the comb.

Luba's hive is very active!

More new comb filled with  honey.





New Brood Comb!

Back in the Super.


Lots of new Brood- Proof there is a Queen Luba!

Old Queen's Comb

Chock full of bees.

Extensions on the old Queen's comb.

Old Queen's comb full of Brood.

Lovely Pollen patterns and colors. 

Brood and Bee Bread being tended by worker bees.

Old Queen's comb from the package.

Workers all over -working the new comb!


Look how lively Luba's Hive is!

A little more smoke left to finish the work.

"Anya" or Grace's Progress After One Month in the Apiary

The all important smoker.

View of inside of Anya's Hive  'Super".

Worker bees on newly constructed and filled  honeycomb.

Beautiful and colorful 'Bee Bread"!
Workers on old comb filled with honey.

New comb full of workers.

Honey and brood in new comb.

Workers just starting to work this comb.z

back side  view

back into the super!

Pattern of brood in the center- honey on the outside.

Old Queen's comb with brood and capped honey reserve.

Old Queen's comb with lovely Bee Bread Pattern.

Close up view.

Old Queen's comb back side view

Broody worker bees.

Inside the Super.

Honey Comb and Honey bees.

Close up of old Brood comb and bees.

Beautiful Pollen Patterns in old Queen's comb.