Some things don’t change much year to year in beekeeping. At least not the chores. There is some comfort in the routine. This year is much like last. Building boxes, cleaning frames, painting and maintenance. And building bees for the spring. ~sassafrasbeefarm
This time of year can be as busy for the beekeeper as the spring nectar flow period. But now it’s all about preparation. My experience, since beginning this beekeeping journey, is that there is never enough time during the nectar flow. In fact, time becomes precious even before the nectar flow with the need to rotate hive bodies or employ other swarm reducing measures, placement of swarm traps, movement of hives to out yards, making splits, and lots of last minute surprises.
So, here are few pictures of what I occupy myself with during this so called off season:
Can you share how you make your sugar cakes?
LikeLiked by 1 person
I make mine the same way Lauri Miller does although I have since dropped almost everything except the vinegar. This time of year it’s almost impossible to get them to dry so it’s better to make them up in late summer and let them dry inside the barn away from the bees. If you make them smaller you can use your oven. Every year I tell myself I’m going to build a drying cabinet that the trays can slide into and let a small lightbulb do the drying. Here is Lauri’s recipe: https://www.beesource.com/forums/showthread.php?290641-My-recipe-method-for-sugar-blocks&highlight=Lauri+miller
Thank you. We will give this a try. This year we purchased winter patties, but I would prefer to make them myself. The winter patties sold in stores are not always in stock.
Why do you like the round holes for entrances over the space at the bottom of the hive for entrance?
Larry Coble said:
I use both. These photos are of 5 frame nucleus hives. I made these medium height for queen mating nucs. The round holes with entrance guards allow me to make the entrance smaller so the smaller colony can guard the entrance better. Also, it makes moving these smaller boxes away from the main yard after splits easier. Spin the guard to close and move the hive.