Country Bees

Tomorrow, we will move two of this Spring’s beehive splits to a new host property. It’s always exciting when splits flourish, and it’s a relief to have a wonderful place to keep these two.

I’m especially excited, though, by this particular location. Only 4.6 miles (and 12 minutes!) from our decidedly suburban neighborhood, this new property sits on the crest of a hill at about 500 feet (compared to our lowly ~15 foot elevation). The property is hot, dry, and exposed, but these hives will live in a cooler microclimate under an old oak tree. 20 feet away, there’s a Toyon tree in bloom. I cannot wait to taste the honey these bees make!

The bees themselves come from one of our longest-lived lines and are our best honey producers. I split them in suburbia in April, then moved them to a temporary rural location, where the queens mated.

Tonight, we’ll go out in the dark to close up the hive entrances. We’ll site the hives on the new property tomorrow morning.

Looking down the slope to the chosen hive location.

Looking down the slope to the chosen hive location.

We hope this cooler microclimate won't be too damp and chilly in the winter.

We hope this cooler microclimate won’t be too damp and chilly in the winter.

We also hope the old oak tree won't drop branches on the hives. Yikes!

We also hope the old oak tree won’t drop branches on the hives. Yikes!

We'll move the two hives on the left to this new property. The larger one might be having some queen troubles, though their population looks great. If needed, we can combine the two later. The queen in the smaller hive has a fantastic brood pattern.

We’ll move the two hives on the left to this new property. The larger one might be having some queen troubles, though their population looks great. If needed, we can combine the two later. The queen in the smaller hive has a fantastic brood pattern.

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