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Author Topic: East Coasters - Spring Flow - Overall Hive Status  (Read 4262 times)
wharfrat
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Location: Richmond, Virginia


« Reply #20 on: May 16, 2009, 09:19:07 PM »

Hi everyone,

I'm just a second year keeper. Was so happy that the girls made it through the winter. I had low numbers after winter, but a good queen. Hive is really starting to turn on and get big now. No honey harvested last year...hope to steal like 40 pounds this year..

Anyway, Tulip Poplar is blooming here in Richmond, and the bees are busy and building comb and storing honey on foundation in my first super. I will likely add another super with foundation in the coming weeks...

Here is a question for you experienced...I just saw conflicting information with regards to Basswood trees...
Wikipedia says Basswood is a major nectar source for honeybees...http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Northern_Nectar_Sources_for_Honeybees#Trees_and_shrubs_2

But...Botany. com....says this..

Bees are highly attracted to the extremely fragrant, minute flowers and produce a delicious Basswood honey. However, do not grow T. tomentosa and its varieties if you keep bees, as the flowers of these trees are poisonous to them.

I guess that is just one particular cultivar of Basswood that is dangerous...anyone have a feel for what I likely have in my area? I live near the river..reckon these are growing feral down there...

Take care!
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mlewis48
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« Reply #21 on: May 17, 2009, 12:45:42 AM »

 I have to agree with most of you. The weather has been bad with the rain. We are having a good flow with the locust blooming and berries are starting but the supers are not filling up like I thought that they should be. Brood chambers are full of bees but they are not filling up supers. We have a few more weeks to go, lets hope something gets them going.......
                    Marc
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EasternShore
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« Reply #22 on: May 17, 2009, 08:36:57 AM »

Another Eastern Shore guy here,

The rain has slowed production of honey but has really helped my brood levels. My house Bee's are only building, not taking sugar at all and seem to be finding good amounts of pollen.
My new farm site is going CRAZY...filling any space they can find will nectur, building comb as fast as I can put supers on. If I had drawn comb already I'd be throwing spuers on weekly. This site has irrigation and a very motivated farmer who use to keep bees but is too busy and would rather pay me. WOOHOOOOO!!!!!
He could find NO ONE for pollenation..I was in shock! This place is like BEE NIRVANA...and expanding..I feel so blessed at this point...
If anyone had told me my Bee business was going to explode like this I would have laughed. Becky's son has been loading all my shallow frames with foundation ( for a fee). I only hope we don't have a repeat of last year..wet spring..then no rain for the entire summer...
My two nuc's are doing great but the queens are tiny...these bees were regressed already and from old local stock. They were given to me for managing a friends 3 hives which had not been open for some time. Very close to swarming as well.
My yard across from my house with my parent hives does not seem to have much interest in working, plenty of numbers but not alot of nectur stored. They are not getting a day of sun exposure due to tree's. I'm tempted to move them to the farm where they can get a steady flow all summer. It's 5 miles away so i'll be forced to leave them alone more..not a bad thing.
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sonny
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« Reply #23 on: May 17, 2009, 07:52:58 PM »

I was surprised to find the shallow supper I put on a hive at my outyard completely capped Friday. It had been on for a couple of weeks. Here in my part of WV there was a nice autumn olive bloom although wet. I noticed today that tulip poplar is starting to bloom now. I lost 1 of 4 over the winter and 1 last fall. I just replaced those with package bees.
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Grandpa Jim
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« Reply #24 on: May 17, 2009, 08:22:30 PM »

My girls have been building up very nicely, so far, But that week of rain did slow things down.  I have one hive from a cut out last year that was getting just where I wanted them for the honey flow and didn't they go and swarm.  Locust is just starting to bloom and the weather is to be sunny and warm for almost the next week, maybe more....that may make up for the lost dandilion.   Jim
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pollenchucker
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« Reply #25 on: May 17, 2009, 10:08:07 PM »

This is my first season, I started the first week of April.  Each time I add a super after the first deep the bees have to build it out.  Right now I have 2 deeps built out and full of both honey and brood.  I added a medium super last week.  I checked this am and they were in the medium working on it hard.  The tulip poplars are in full swing as well as other stuff though I can't say what the other stuff is.  They're bring in pollen from white to yellow to deep orange.  Anyway I figure I will be adding a shallow super just before the first of June to keep up with them.
BTW we have a ton of dandelions this year but I did not notice the bees working them, maybe I just missed them.  I don't really go over there that much these days.  There's plenty enough to keep up with down here.
-pc
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challenger
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« Reply #26 on: May 18, 2009, 10:16:06 AM »

I am really disappointed right now. We have had 4-5 days of rain straight and a few prior to that right in the middle of the best flow in years and I think this may put the screws to the honey crop this year. Our temps are way down today and yesterday. I would say 25 degrees below normal. Prior to this my hives were really starting to get going and I have 2 supers on 3 hives and 1 super on another. Another setback for me was finding eggs in a medium honey super on one frame. I didn't use an excluder because these were undrawn foundation and once they were drawn out they were quickly filled with nectar so I figured I would keep the frames with nectar in the center and the queen would not come up and lay in them. As it turns out there were several rows on this one frame that were empty and she put eggs in them, I scraped this section of comb out and out the frame to the outside figuring the bees would rebuild the comb and I also reversed the hive and made sure the queen had plenty of room to lay in. Maybe I need to use an excluder but I feel like it will slow the honey production down. Would using half an excluder in the middle section help?
Thanks-Howard
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sc-bee
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« Reply #27 on: May 18, 2009, 10:39:05 AM »

I am about 45 mins form twt. Our flow looks off this year. The old timers are telling me it is due to the amount of rain we have had this year. They say it takes about three days to recover from a downpour and it seems we have had one about every other three days or so for the last month.

Most folks are saying it is over for us for the year?

Two years ago we had a late flow of some kind (no one could identify) in July. My bees are within abou a mile of a small town, maybe sources in yards contributed.  This is not he norm in my area. Hope we get it again
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John 3:16
pollenchucker
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42 days and their wings fall off, eh?


« Reply #28 on: May 18, 2009, 04:03:33 PM »

This cold rainy windy weather has pretty much blown all the tulip poplar blossoms off the trees.  What a shame they were going strong and filling my boxes with nectar.  But we have persimmons and holly coming up and then my clover, borage, buckwheat, birdsfoot trefoil, and anise hyssops.  So I'm not discouraged. 
-pc
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heaflaw
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« Reply #29 on: May 19, 2009, 12:01:35 AM »

I am in Piedmont NC with about 15 hives.  Lots of rain/clouds.  Bees have not been able to get out to forage and are not bringing in nearly as much as in past years.  Brood rearing was heavy a month ago, but, though I haven't checked closely, I suspect it has slowed.   The ones that swarmed early I doubt will recover enough to make anything.   A good way to tell how much they are bringing in is to walk in front of the hives just after dark and listen for the buzz of drying the nectar.  They are not as loud as in years past.  My season ends around June 15.  If we don't get sustained dry weather soon, it will be too late for me (if it's not already too late).
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TwT
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Ted


« Reply #30 on: May 20, 2009, 06:35:02 PM »

Most folks are saying it is over for us for the year?

I went to one of my out yards yesterday and pulled 3 supers and 1 deep I installed 2 weeks earlier and they was even worked on, nothing drawn out at all, seems we did get better flows from poplar when we was in a drought. looked at most of my supers and seems that yard has more clover honey than poplar, my back yard hives has poplar honey but not as much as I would have liked being the hives was loaded with bee's this year, I was planning on all 50+ mediums filled and 10+ shallows filled and maybe even 60+deeps frames filled to extract this year, looks like I might get the deep frame count and maybe 30 mediums super plus 3 shallows filled this year, depressing when you think about it, I have about 20 more supers just sitting there with foundation that will have to wait to next year, maybe I might get about 50 more build this year to add to it because I am fixing to go wide open into raising queens and splitting and making more nuc's, hope the queen rearing goes better than the flow. 
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pollenchucker
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Location: Derby, NC

42 days and their wings fall off, eh?


« Reply #31 on: May 23, 2009, 05:08:06 PM »

Well the tulip poplars are still producing.  That cold windy rainy front hit us from the SE of all directions, so all the poplars on the NW side of a decent buffer are still intact.  I was watching the bees today and saw them all heading between W and N, so went and took a look and sure enough there they were still going at it.
-pc
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SgtMaj
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« Reply #32 on: May 23, 2009, 09:19:20 PM »

It's been dry this last week and the girls have really been bringing it in.
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challenger
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« Reply #33 on: May 24, 2009, 10:23:50 AM »

What do you think they are getting nectar from? I my bees are flying hard but nectar is barely trickling in. I bought 4 nice nucs and 2 queens for splits and now have 11 hives that should be double deeps easily by the Fall. I may even split the 2 hives I have supers on when the honey is harvested. The nucs are taking a quart of light syrup a day so this is going to be expensive but I suppose next year will be worth it.
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Wes Sapp
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« Reply #34 on: May 24, 2009, 11:56:10 AM »

I'm like TWT, pulled untouched supers off last week. I have 8 hives and it's looking like I might get 12 med supers of honey.
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Wes Sapp
pollenchucker
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42 days and their wings fall off, eh?


« Reply #35 on: May 24, 2009, 03:53:45 PM »

Well there is nothing else up on the north side of my woods but tulip poplars that are still blooming.  I can watch practically all the bees leaving the hive heading North.  Now I honestly can't see them working up there because those are 90 foot trees but I don't see anything else around either.  And I do see them still building out the new middle deep I put on last week. 
-pc
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Gware
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« Reply #36 on: May 24, 2009, 06:16:38 PM »

well in central kentucky it looks good here but it is getting dry. This is only my second year and I have only couple hives that were strong enough, there rest of my hives were this years swarms, but I think I am going to get three  medium supers off 2 hives and they even swarmed so I am happy with what I am going to get this year. They even had to draw out the comb on all the supers too. so I am very happy with this year!
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challenger
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« Reply #37 on: May 25, 2009, 09:08:35 AM »

Does anyone know if the bees forage on Swamp Bay Magnolia? I have a ton of them here. They have a flower that look like a miniature Southern Magnolia.
I think I also have a few Sourwood here anf was wondering if these are done blooming.
Thanks-Howard
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pollenchucker
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Location: Derby, NC

42 days and their wings fall off, eh?


« Reply #38 on: May 25, 2009, 10:57:03 AM »

Don't know about those Magnolias but they havent touched mine.  As far as Sourwood we are still looking forward to it here.  Should be soon I am told.  My buckwheat is beginning to flower though.
-pc
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challenger
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« Reply #39 on: May 26, 2009, 09:02:00 PM »

Where is Derby NC?
I am in S.E. NC and I hope the trees I am seeing are sourwood for sure. Do you have any photos of the ones near you? I am so disappointed in this years lack of production due to the heavy and very poorly timed downpours. It seems the bees are still gathering nectar but I don't know where it is coming from. The trees that I think are sourwood have tiny buds on them and I can only say they are sourwood from photos I've seen on the web.
Thanks-Howard
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