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Temple Bee News  - November 2012

It has been a mixed year for the Honey Bees of Temple. Over the winter two hives died out. This was mainly due to the damp weather and going into the winter in a weak condition due to the poor summer of 2011.
The two remaining hives left their long - term home at Jane’s telephone exchange and moved up to the walled garden at Vogrie.

Sadly, in 2011 my bee mentor, Gordon, who lived at Fushiebridge, died. Gordon had help set up my hives when I first started and was always on hand to offer help and advice.

The bees returned to Temple in May. We were lucky enough to inherit two of Gordon’s hives. They joined the remaining two hives on the back wall of number 9, heading straight out in to the field to forage. The bees liked this spot with the early morning sun warming them up to start their long days work. The season started to look good, but this soon changed with a wet and windy summer, not good for bees flying.

During July the bees swarmed several times. Bees usually swarm when they are successful. They have filled up the hive with honey stores and young new bees. The existing queen takes off to find a new home taking half the flying bees with her.  A new virgin queen hatches in the hive, goes off on a mating flight, and returns to starts laying eggs . If you are lucky, you can catch the old queen and her bees and re-house them in one of your hives.

Bee swarm in tree

The Temple bees this year just swarmed and swarmed, for no apparent reason. We managed to catch most of them and ended up with 7 hives on the wall. The bees managed to get out over the remaining summer collecting nectar up to two miles away from Temple.

Re -  housing swarm

We harvested the honey in September and have been feeding the bees with sugar and water ever since.
The bees will spend the winter up at Vogrie, protected and warmish in the walled garden. Hopefully with enough stores and not much rain they will get through the winter.

Echinops ritro Veitch's Blue is a wonderful flower that attracts many bees. Plant some now.

The honey we harvested is predominately made from rape seed oil (RSO) the masses of yellow flower in the field, also mixed with clover and other blossoms.

Our honey is jarred raw and has not been heat treated. RSO has a tendency to set very hard. There is a choice of 3 textures of honey from us. It is all from the same harvest.

Set honey – straight from the comb
Runny honey – this is set honey that is warmed through. Place the jar in warm water or pop into the microwave for a few seconds.
Creamed honey – by beating the set honey the cells are broken down and this creates a cream texture. This honey should stay this consistency.

Bees Wax
The bees expend a lot more effort and energy in producing wax than honey. Wax for hundreds of years has been about 8 times the prices of honey kg for kg.

You can use the wax in woodwork, mix with turpentine for polish, cosmetics, candles, fly fishing lines, etc... or just hold and smell.

  • Bee fact 1: One teaspoon of honey takes 50,000 bee flights to collect.
  • Bee fact 2: The queen lays on average two thousand eggs a day in one of your hives.
  • Bee fact 3: Bees collect nectar and regurgitate it to make honey.
  • Bee fact 4: Bees have special glands that produce wax.

Contact us at 01875 830207 to buy Honey or wax. It is also sold at Temple Post Office.

Last updated: 29 November, 2012 Search This Website © Temple Village Website 2012