Godless in the garden

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Godless in the garden

Welcome to gardeners, growers of veggies, fruits, flowers, and trees!  

 

Welcome  backyard hen enthusiasts, worm farmers, beekeepers & composters!

Location: Planet Earth
Members: 161
Latest Activity: 7 hours ago

Welcome to Eden!

If you like to dig in the dirt, plant & prune, grow food & flowers, or sit and watch as someone else does your landscaping, you'll find something here to discuss!

Selected topics, in no particular order:
Moon Phase Widget here. Moon phase topic here.
What's your gardening style?
Frugal gardening.
Backyard Chickens here. here. here. here.
Growing Fruits
Wild Parsnip - It can burn skin.
Why buy locally-grown plants?
Squirrels.
bees.
Cheap gardening.
Buy locally grown plants to prevent blight transmission here.
Grow lots of fruits in a small space, by backyard orchard culture.

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Comment by Sentient Biped on April 9, 2013 at 9:54am

Spud, I think  you are right to protect the blackberry, since it it leafed out.  When is your expected last frost date?

Since I'm new at beekeeping - a true novice - I can't say for sure.  I've done a lot of reading.  

They are evolved to live in an enclosed space, such as a hollow tree.  The hive is how we imitate that space.  As long as the space is appropriate size for them, their instinct is to stay put.  The queen stays put as well.

When the bee community is too big for the hive, they create a new queen and she leaves along with about half of the workers, in a swarm.  They seek another space that simulates a hollow tree, such as inside house walls, or a hollow tree if there is one.  Often they hang out on a tree branch until they find a space - which freaks out anyone nearby.

Beehives are built on designs, developed over a long time - centuries.  This particular one is an older design, called Kenya Top-Bar Hive.  It is considered less "industrial".  This method  allows the bees to make the comb in their own preferred shape, instead of rectangular.  The comb is not reused over and over, unlike the commercial hives.  Since pesticides concentrate in wax, this exposes the bees to much less pesticide and toxin.  The commercial Box-type hives, called "Langstroth" Hives, are very heavy, resulting in bad backs for older beekeepers.  In a top bar hive, the beekeeper handles one comb at a time.  It's like standing at a keyboard.  So it's much easier on the beekeeper.  This hive produces less honey than the commercial hive, but I'm thinking it's better for the bees and the beekeeper.

Comment by Idaho Spud on April 9, 2013 at 9:11am

Yes Sentient, my blackberry has lots of large leaves.  It also was root-bound and I had to pull-away a lot of the roots to keep them from continuing their circular path.

I didn't worry about the one I planted last year because I see no leaves on it yet and it's had time to adapt.

I like hearing about your bees.  How do you get them to stay where you want them?  I've heard they stay where the queen is, but how do you get the queen to stay?

Comment by Sentient Biped on April 9, 2013 at 8:58am

Spud, there is something about gardening and people who garden that gives as much peace of mind as any religion.  And exciting at the same time.  And rewarding.  Thank you and the others here for all of the great conversations, progress reports, info, and ideas.

Your blackberry should adapt well.  Here in SW Washington, the wild ones take over.  Yours is probably tamer and not as rampant.  Has it leafed out yet?  It will be more sensitive if it has broken dormancy.

Here is the box of bees I picked up at the bee store yesterday.  Until last year I had no idea there were bee stores.  Amazing.

 

After installing them in the hive I sat in a lawn chair in the drizzle and watched them buzz around and familiarize themselves with their new neighborhood.  I gave them a feeder full of sugar water, since they have no honey stores to depend on.  Occasionally, one would land on my trousers or shirt and feel me with its antennae, then apparently decide I'm useless as a source of nectar and pollen and fly away.

Not much to look at, but the spots on the white wood are bees.

I hope your temperature warms up soon. It's time for Spring!

Comment by Idaho Spud on April 9, 2013 at 8:44am

Sentient, thank you much for this group.

When I posted the places I go on Nexus to regain my calm, I realized this group was more calming than all the rest put together.  I appreciate it.

After 2 weeks of warm weather, the temperature here this morning is 23 degrees F.  31 was predicted.  I covered my newly planted blackberry with a plastic garbage can last night just in case 31 might hurt it, although I figured it would not.

Very glad I did after seeing the temperature hovering at 23 for the last hour or more.

Comment by Idaho Spud on April 8, 2013 at 10:31am

They are pretty Dallas.

Comment by A Former Member on April 7, 2013 at 10:59pm

I planted a Columbine this year and it is already doing nicely. Pretty flowers. 

Comment by Joan Denoo on April 6, 2013 at 11:52pm
Amer, your viola flowers look bright and springlike.
Comment by Joan Denoo on April 6, 2013 at 11:46pm
Flowers Timelapse, simply stunning and lovely music to fit movements of flowers. Thanks Dallas.
The bee keeper audio gives important information. "The Second Silent Spring", a chilling thought.
Comment by A Former Member on April 6, 2013 at 10:51pm

Comment by amer chohan on April 6, 2013 at 10:50pm

 

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