Milkweed: It’s Not Just for Monarchs

Many beekeepers are fond of watching the miracles of monarch development unfold alongside our honey bee colonies. Often recognized as a field weed of sorts, milkweed is a valuable food source to many pollinators. It is slow to emerge in spring, but once established, this native readily returns and multiplies. In our area, milkweed blooms… Continue reading Milkweed: It’s Not Just for Monarchs

Hello, Summer!

While June’s arrival signals the start of summer and all the delightful offerings we dream of in cold, dreary February, it also signals the dreaded end of the nectar flow here in Maryland. It’s been an interesting flow, one with heavy, prolonged rains, but also one with nectar stores now needing to be cured. Our… Continue reading Hello, Summer!

April Showers Bring May Flowers

And the nectar flow!  The Maryland nectar flow relies upon tulip poplar, black locust and blackberry, all beginning to bloom as my scaled hive proves with steady increases of five to seven pounds each day last week.  As we revel in warm weather, watching our busy girls returning to the hives with full bellies of nectar… Continue reading April Showers Bring May Flowers

When Things Go Wrong: Chicken Infirmary, Part 2

As I shared in When Things Go Wrong: Chicken Infirmary, Part 1, things can go wrong with your chickens with little warning.  Having emergency supplies like gloves, antiseptic and temporary housing at the ready can make a big difference in aiding your chickens.  But sometimes, it’s not enough. Friday morning, I let the girls out… Continue reading When Things Go Wrong: Chicken Infirmary, Part 2

When Things Go Wrong: Chicken Infirmary, Part 1

In my research before getting my chickies, I recall reading about the importance of having emergency supplies on hand in the event that something goes wrong, because when dealing with animals, things happen.   I assembled a sundry of supplies to keep in my storage shed for just such emergencies, hoping that by keeping them… Continue reading When Things Go Wrong: Chicken Infirmary, Part 1

Honey Bee Forage Sources in Maryland

We watched our girls visit early bloomers like winter aconite, crocus, and hellebores, grateful for these food sources while we wait for the warmer temperatures needed to wake up more pollen and nectar-rich plants.  April is now upon us with promises of rising temperatures, sunny skies and rain to help in the cause.  These warmer… Continue reading Honey Bee Forage Sources in Maryland

Vegetable Gardening for Honey Bees

These cold winter days don’t allow for much gardening time.   Like many of you, I’ve been considering the possibilities that spring planting offers lately, particularly as seed catalogs pile up and lure me into their pages with colorful spreads of summer’s bounty.  Last week, it was warm enough for bees to fly.  I went out… Continue reading Vegetable Gardening for Honey Bees