Friday, November 28, 2014

pricing your honey

<link>  you can dig around the national honey board's website too...there's usually a chart of honey prices - the pricing is updated monthly....and it shows RETAIL vs WHOLESALE averages.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

what da?!

beekeeper Fred just commented: I was putting on a few Bee Cozy's.  In several hives the cluster was at the top of the hive.  Seems like the bees never got the message to migrate to the bottom brood chamber and work upwards through the winter.  Hope this doesn't portend heavy winter losses again. 

....yup...ME TOO.  bees were in the top box when i last looked.  i'm HOPING that that's not REALLY where the CLUSTER IS. i'm hoping those were just "feeder" bees up there looking for a sugar bucket.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

marketing, marketing, marketing!

what's the saying about the "rule" of a successful business - location, location, location??.  BEEKEEPERS - THE WORLD HAS CHANGED!  marketing, marketing, marketing!  take a look at the marketing behind this <link> "fancy" honey and ask yourself a couple questions: what's the "per pound" cost of the honey? What is the buyers "perceived VALUE" of this fancy honey?  i'd bet they're not using this in a cake recipe...they're treating it like LIQUID GOLD that it is.

then look at your OWN honey....what is it's TRUE COST? (keeping in mind OUR cost of beekeeping is increasing all the while our stock decreases) what is it's VALUE?  i think it's good for all of us small producers to RETHINK...concentrate our marketing of our precious (and limited) commodity by it's VALUE and get beyond this "price per pound" thing we're hung-up on.

when i teach a class and we all take-up a honey stick - i remind the students that THEY ARE TASTING A MOMENT IN TIME.  never again will those bees, gather nectar from those flowers.  bees change, seasons change, environments change.

Monday, November 17, 2014

almonds...this EFFECTS us!

California's worst drought for more than a century is causing huge problems for farmers, who need a trillion gallons of water per year for their almond orchards alone.

Sleep Deprived Bees do Weirder Waggle Dance


Monday, November 10, 2014

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Make your OWN QUEENS come spring!

Please read this WELL-WRITTEN, SIMPLY-EXPLAINED article on "MAKING YOUR OWN QUEENS". <link>  This winter's challenge and "project" for you is to BUILD SOME NUCS for this purpose come spring.  A nice 5-frame hive (nuc) is PERFECT for this application.  If you're not much of a carpenter - you can buy a FOLD-N-GO NUC box from dadant <link>.  (I suggest getting several right away - they're CHEAP! and useful to have around).

IF I HAVE BUT ONE survivor come spring......this is what I'm going to do!  The only caveat is...the STRONG HIVE part :)


i'll sign up for any opportunity at FREE BOOKS  ;)

Common Winter Beekeeping Problems: Pests and Diseases (and a new book)

winter beekeeping problems - article: <link>

these books look quite interesting <keeping bees in towns & cities> <rooftop keeper>

Monday, November 3, 2014

3# package installation

is it too early to get a little brush-up on installing those ($100+) packages???

our "marriage" to the almond INDUSTRY

a little rant via articles around the net....
• Why almonds are bad news for the environment <link>
• Fewer bees in US threaten almond crop <link>
• Are California almonds destroying the US bee supply? <link>
• Almond prices rocket due to honey bee shortage <link>
• California almonds keep down pollination fees <link>
• Paramount Farms buying out beekeepers? <link>
• 80,000+ beehives damage or dead <link>
• Beekeeping industry DOOMED <link>