Beekeeping

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The apiary perfectly complements to remainder of our farm, as the honeybees pollinate our crops while providing amazing honey for harvest.  Our bees have grown along with the cherry orchard, as the bees contribute to a strong crop through early season pollination.  Additionally, the cherries blossom much earlier than many other flowering plants, which provides a welcome source of pollen and nectar for the bees when they begin searching the landscape after emerging from their hives after cold winter weather.

 

 Caring for our bees is a year-long effort.  Some of the essential duties include opening the hives and evaluating the colonies' health; splitting existing hives in the spring to increase the  number of colonies; providing supplemental feed to weaker hives; treating bees against harmful varroa destructor mites; and, maintaining data collection and records on each hive throughout the year to help identify possibly problems and develop strategies for keeping the apiary healthy.

Over the years we have planted numerous flowering plants to support our native insects and wildlife in addition to the honeybees that we care for.  One important consideration is providing flowering plants that produce nectar and pollen throughout the warm months, especially early spring and the heat of summer.  Throughout the property Dutch white and Alsike clovers to provide rich sources of nectar; our cherry orchard is surrounded by wildflowers; and, we converted part of a row crop field into a prairie that supports native wildflowers and grasses.

We offer honey for sale at our farm, local farmers markets, and our online store.  You may click here to learn more about about our be-related products.

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Our bees live in Langstroth hive boxes, and gather food from wildflowers and clover.

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Honeybees and native bees that call our farm home help pollinate the crops.

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Honey is stored by bees on frames, which allow honey to be more easily harvested.

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