Honey Flow Underway
Good news, there is a very strong honey flow in progress here around Cedar Rapids. The overwintered colonies have put up anywhere from 1-3 supers of honey and they're drawing some foundation as well. Some of the splits I'm running as singles have a box of honey too, but the ones that I gave a second deep box of foundation for their brood chamber are just finishing drawing it out. So we need another few weeks of honey coming in to make sure that we actually get a decent crop from all the hives. Things are very promising however. The forecast is calling for temperatures in the +95F area. Perfect for bees as long as there isn't a massive thunderstorm that cuts off the flow (though the row crops desperately need a few inches of precipitation). Yellow sweet clover is just finishing up, but the trefoil and white sweet clover are in full bloom right now. A big crop is much more likely if we have honey come in during both June and July--so having something put up in June is extremely encouraging. I first got a hint that things were very good when I returned from the Agricultural History Society's conference in Manhattan (Kansas) and checked in at Bass Farms. Several hives had two boxes stored. I moved another ten hives to that location two nights ago, so now there are 24 hives lining the ridge across from Palisades State Park. I'll have to remember to take a picture and share it the next time I go. For now, there will be a few more hives working to produce the honey on the shelves out at Bass Farms. Their irrigation system also has their produce looking great in an extremely dry year.